I’m making a lot of stuff out of eggs lately. Not so much outta chicken. Go figure.
Here’s how it works. I make something out of eggs which I get from my chickens, then any leftovers of the souffle, quiche or pancakes I give to my chickens, who then make more eggs out of it. It’s enough to make your head explode, and mine probably would if it weren’t for all the migraine medication I’m on. Plus sometimes I wrap my head in masking tape. Just in case.
So, I’m always up for a new egg based dish. The latest one I’ve been making includes another ingredient I’m always up for … goat cheese. I found the basics of this recipe while watching the greatest show on earth. No. Not the circus. The circus bores me. And clowns give me the creeps. No, I’m referring to Masterchef Australia. It’s what Masterchef US should be. But isn’t.
In one episode the contestants had to duplicate a dish from a restaurant, and the dish happened to be a Carmelized Leek & Goat Cheese Tart. They were made as individual tarts for the show, so I’ve converted the recipe to make one large tart.
I even went out and bought a proper tart pan for it. A proper tart pan has a loose bottom in it, so when it’s time to serve the tart all you do is push up on the bottom of the tart pan and your entire tart pops out, making for easy slicing. A LOT of tarts let things pop out when you push their bottoms. It would seem to me this is how all pie pans should be made. But that could be the migraine medication talking.
So I have for you today my version of this delicious main dish.
If you like you can make your own pastry.
If you don’t like … you can use a frozen one.
This pastry is one of Maggie Beer’s sour cream pastries made with flour, sour cream, butter, eggs and salt.
I always use a food processor to make pastry. Best tip when making pastry is handle it as little as possible and keep everything as cool as possible.
Add your butter and flour to food processor and pulse. Pulsing creates less heat than mixing and allows for greater control.
Pulse the pastry until your mixture is like large breadcrumbs. You still want to see little hunks of butter in there.
Add the eggs, sour cream and salt.
Mix until the dough just comes together.
Without touching it, dump the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap. Using the edges of the plastic wrap, push the dough into a flat ball.
Stick it in the fridge for half an hour.
Now for the guts of the tart.
Prep 3 leeks like I showed you last week.
Slice the leeks and mince the garlic. Saute leeks, garlic and salt in butter and olive oil for 10 minutes over medium heat until soft. Add white wine and stock and simmer for another 3-4 minutes. Throw in some ground pepper and transfer mixture to a bowl to cool.
While the leeks are cooking, roll out your pastry and line your tart pan with it. Prick it.
Blind bake your pie crust. To do this, fill the pie with tin foil, and add some kind of pastry weights. Actual pastry weights, rice or what I’ve used here, brown lentils. I just keep the lentils in a bag marked “pastry weights” and use them over and over.
Bake for 15 minutes at 375.
While the pie shell is baking, mix up your remaining ingredients.
Eggs, egg yolks and cream
Mix the leek mixture into the egg/cream mixture. Pour into baked pie shell. Scatter goat cheese across the top. As much or as little as you like.
Bake in 375 oven for 20 minutes, or until centre is set. You know. Not wiggly.
Caramelised leek filling
3 small trimmed leeks, white and light green part only
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 small garlic clove, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4 1/2 tablespoons dry white wine
4 1/2 tablespoons fresh stock (chicken or vegetable)
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
8 ½ tablespoons cream ( I use whatever cream I have in the house. Whipping, half and half or 18%.
Prep leeks and slice thinly. Add garlic, leeks and salt to butter and oil in pan over medium heat. Saute 10 minutes or until leeks are softened.
Add white wine and stock. Simmer 3-4 minutes. Add fresh ground pepper. Remove from pan into bowl and allow mixture to cool.
Mix together eggs, egg yolks and cream. Add to cooled leek mixture.
Pour into baked pie shell, top with crumbled goat cheese and bake at 325 for 20 minutes, or until set.
And then you eat it of course.
And that Potato/Leek soup you were expecting? Maybe another day. Maybe when you’re expecting a tart. Nobody likes to be predictable.