Sunday, 21 March 2010

Caramelised Leek, Spinach, and Goats Cheese Tart

I've been teased before about my slight addiction to Marie Claire UK magazine. If I'm in England I will buy every issue, and on weekdays I normally check their website at least once to find out the 'Buy of the Day', clothes and/or beauty products that are normally quite appealing and quite good value. I don't care what people say, I love it.

Anyway, it's not just beauty and fashion. This a recipe I found in there which I love. Love love love.

Caramelised Leek, Spinach and Goats Cheese Tart

9 oz/255 g/1 rounded cup all-purpose flour
4 1/2 oz/125 g/ 1/2 cup butter

2 tbsp olive olil
1 leek, thinly sliced
1 head of fennel, thinly sliced
5 1/2 oz/155 g/ 3/4 cup baby spinach leaves
2 1/2 oz/70 g/ 1/3 cup goats cheese, crumbled
3 eggs, lightly beaten
5 1/2 fl oz/160 ml/ 2/3 cup pouring/whipping cream

NOTE: Can substitute fennel for more leek if you prefer.

serves 6-8

1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF/200ºC/Gas mark 6. Place the flour and butter in a bowl or in the bowl of a food processor and mix until it resembles breadcrumbs Gradually add 3-4 tbsp iced water until the pastry comes together (if doing this by hand mix with a spoon). Gather into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

2. Roll out the pastry onto a floured surface to fit an 8 1/2 inch/ 21 1/2 cm circular tin (if you don't have a circular one a rectangular one of a similar area will do– see picture!). Ease into the tin and trim off the excess pastry.

3. Line the tin with baking paper and fill with baking weights or rice. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and weights and bake for a further 10 minutes. Remove from the oven reduce the temperature to 315ºF/160ºC/Gas mark 3.

4. Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the leek and fennel and cook for 20 minutes. Remove. Add the spinach and cook until wilted. Spread the leek and fennel over the pastry. Top with the spinach and the crumbled goats cheese. Combine the eggs and cream in a separate bowl, and then pour into the pastry shell. Bake for 40 minutes.

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