Pastéis de Nata

Three 'pastéis de nata' and a scoop of mascarpone on a plate.

I’ve only become aware of pastéis de nata within the last couple of years. A friend mentioned seeing them on display in the baked goods section of a small-town Co-Op as evidence of their having become fully mainstream in the UK. Until then I’d been quite oblivious to the things. After that I began to notice these sweet Portuguese egg-custard pastries all over the place.

At my local Lidl I spotted both freshly-baked pastéis and, during one of their weekly international promotions, boxes of frozen ones. The convenience of the latter – made in Portugal – appealed to me, leading to a first purchase. I don’t know how closely they approximate to the real freshly-made thing, but I do enjoy them. I’ve taken to serving them with a scoop of mascarpone (as in the picture above), as if they weren’t quite unhealthy enough already.