French Custard Flan with Chocolate Cherries

This homely and comforting custard pie is very similar to the South African milk tart and easy to make. Chocolate-covered cherries and a melted layer of apricot jam give it a beautiful sweetness.


Serves 6-8

Preparation Time

Cook time

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Cook's NoteRequires setting time overnight.
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For the Pastry:

  • 150g cake flour
  • 1ml salt
  • 20g caster sugar
  • 75g unsalted butter, diced
  • 50ml cold water

For the Filling:

  • 750ml milk
  • 125ml water
  • 4 large eggs
  • 370g caster sugar
  • 1ml vanilla powder
  • 60g cornflour
  • 15ml fine apricot jam

For the Chocolate Cherries:

  • 100g 70% dark chocolate
  • 100g white chocolate
  • 360g fresh cherries


To make the Pastry:

Place the flour, salt, sugar and butter in a food processor. Blitz until the butter and flour are well blended. Add water and blitz until the mixture forms a dough. Remove and cover with cling film. Leave the pastry to rest for 30 minutes in the fridge. Roll out very thinly on a floured surface. Line a Le Creuset Heart-Shaped Fluted Flan Dish with the pastry.

To make the Filling:

Place the oven rack in the centre of the oven and pre-heat to 180°C. Mix the milk and water together in a casserole and bring to the boil. Beat together the eggs, sugar, vanilla and cornflour until light. Add the warm milk mixture and mix well. Return the mixture to the casserole. Cook, stirring continuously until custard is thick. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Pour the custard into the lined flan dish and bake for 1 hour. Remove and leave to cool. Place in the fridge overnight to set. Brush a layer of melted apricot jam on top of the tart.

To make the Chocolate Cherries:

Break both chocolates in pieces and place in separate heatproof bowls over casseroles of simmering water. Do not let the bowls touch the water. Stir until melted. Dip half the cherries in dark chocolate and the other half in white chocolate. Place on a tray lined with baking paper and leave to set. Decorate the flan with the cherries.