A variation on an Ottolenghi recipe from "Plenty" - shortcrust pastry (Maggie Beer recipe), bottom layer of leeks, kale, chard and broccoli leaves, cheeses - goat, aged cheddar, feta - balsamic-glazed garlic, eggs + cream. Very rich, very delicious.
Some of you will be pleased to know that in 2014 I'll be starting a separate cooking blog so that this one will be free for other stuff. I do have another life...
Here's my version of the recipe.
Shortcrust pastry - 250g flour, 200g butter, 125ml sour cream
1 leek, sliced thinly
250g spinach. silverbeet, chard, etc.
1 head of garlic
120g goats cheese
60g vintage cheddar cheese
60g feta cheese
Plus small amounts of balsamic vinegar, sugar, fresh rosemary and thyme leaves...
Make a quantity of Maggie Beer's sour cream pastry recipe - use half for the base of this and half for another tart base. Blind bake the base. (well, I didn't know what that meant 6 months ago either...) Put in the fridge until you need it.
I then boiled some kale, chard and broccoli leaves from our garden in water with a pinch of salt for a few minutes. Drain, cool, and the squeezze out the liquid by hand. Saute 1 sliced leek in butter gently for about 10 mins, then drain. Chop the greens and mix them together.
Peel the cloves from 1 head of garlic. Blanch in boiling water for 2 mins. Then cook in 1 tbsp olive oil on high heat for 2 mins. Stir during cooking to make sure that the garlic browns but doesn't burn. Add 1/2 tsp good balsamic vinegar and 1/2 cup water, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 10 mins.
Add 2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp chopped rosemary and 1/2 tsp chopped thyme leaves (yes, fresh ones...) and a pinch of sea salt. Simmer on medium for 10 mins. I added a good splash of vino cotto half way through. At the end you want the garlic to be coated with sticky balsamic syrup.
Whisk together 2 eggs and a cup of thick cream. Add some cracked black pepper and a pinch of sea salt.
Place the greens (leeks, chard, kale, etc) in the bottom of the pie base. then crumble the cheeses across the base in clumps or mounds (unevenly - this is like making a quatro formaggio "four cheese pizza" - you want each bite to taste different).
Then place the garlic cloves at intervals across the tart. Don't lie them down flat, put them at different angles.
Gently pour the egg and cream mixture around the tart, filling the tart but not covering the garlic cloves and mounds of cheese. You don't need to use all of the mixture.
Bake at 160 C for 35 to 45 mins until the top of the tart has browned enough
Serve with a salad (in ourcase it was fresh tomato and lettuce from our garden.)
You MUST buy Ottolenghi's cookbooks. "Plenty" is all vegetable and it has enough ideas to last a very long time. "Jerusalem" is brilliant, and it has meat dishes... I am enamoured with Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking, as this is the heart of the "west" of the food belt. Remarkable yet often so simple.