Raspberry & Black Pepper Birdseed Tart

A while back I was watching the birds on the feeder in the garden. I had popped a few berries outside for their little treat, they looked so happy pecking away, toing and froing with goodies for the little ones back in the nest.

I could literally watch their antics for hours, great fuel for procrastination. Anyway, that berry birdseed combination started my little brain whirring. And so, this beautiful tart was born. Be warned, it’s not sweet, it’s like a refreshing kick in the face… but sugar isn’t too good for the birdies so we are staying true to the inspiration.

Make it and you’ll love it so much you’ll be tweeting from the treetops!


Birdseed Pastry

250g Mixed seeds

150g Plain Flour

100g Caster Sugar

200g Unsalted Butter, fridge cold, cut into 1cm cubes

2 tsp Black Pepper

Pinch Salt

1 Egg


250g Mascarpone

2 tbsp Lemon Curd

½ tsp Cracked Black Pepper

350g Frozen Raspberries, defrosted

2 tbsp Icing Sugar

30ml Water

2 Leaves Gelatine

Fresh Berries to Decorate


1. Begin with the pastry. Blitz the seeds to a chunky crumb, mix with the flour and black pepper and set aside.

2. Add the sugar to a food processor, blitz until fine (like icing sugar) and add in the butter, flours and salt. Pulse until it forms a texture like sand, add the egg and pulse to form a crumbly dough.

3. Turn onto a work surface, knead with your hands to form a cohesive dough then shape into a disc.

4. Roll this disc to fit a 20-23cm fluted flan ring and pop into the fridge for at least 4 hours to firm up.

5. Preheat oven 180C. prick the base with a fork and line with crumpled baking paper. Fill with baking beans and bake 15-20 minutes or until the sides are set. Remove the beans and the paper and cook 5-10 minutes more, or until the base feels sandy and is golden all over. Allow to cool.

6. Once cool, beat the mascarpone with the lemon curd and black pepper. Spoon or pipe into the base and pop in the fridge.

7. Soak the gelatine leaves in ice cold water (no warmer as it will dissolve and lose some setting power).

8. Blend the raspberries with the water and icing sugar until smooth. Strain through a sieve and transfer ¼ of the mixture to a small pan.

9. Bring this to a boil, remove from the heat and add the squeezed gelatine leaves. Whisk well to combine then add to the remaining raspberry puree.

10. Whisk well and test the temperature with your finger, it shouldn’t feel hot or cold, just body temperature. If it’s too hot leave for a while, whisking, until cooled.

11. Transfer to a jug and take this jug to the fridge. With the tart firmly on the fridge shelf, pour over your raspberry topping until even and smooth. Doing it this way will allow you to fill it nice and full without spilling as you walk it to the fridge.

12. Allow to set for 4 hours before decorating with berries and serving with whipped cream.