Sunday, 17 February 2013

Fancy something savoury?

...Leek & Ham Hock Tart

This tart is so versatile; just about anything can be used in place of the leeks and the ham hock.  Once again you will be limited by your own imagination!  It makes an excellent savoury piece for an afternoon tea, a summer salad, a picnic, or how about a mid February Sunday afternoon treat?  Perfect served with new potatoes and salad, or even on its own!  So many options!  

I have made this tart using just leeks, and have made it using prosciutto.  This particular tart has been made with ham hock (I cheated and bought the ready prepared ham hock from Waitrose, so no faffing about soaking and boiling the ham - got to find an easy life somewhere!).  I must say the addition of ham hock makes it a more substantial slice of tart than if I used just the leeks without any meat, so you choose which you prefer, the lightness of a leek tart, or if you are in need of something more wholesome then add the ham hock.

In the past I have made this using ready made pastry (another labour saving device!) and really have shyed away from making pastry from scratch!  I decided to grab the bull by the horns today, and make pastry...another secret I will share with very first pastry too!  There it's out in the open :)  However I must say that making the pastry was no where near as daunting as I presumed it would be, in fact it was effortless (I did use a food processor to make it in), and it tastes 100% better than the ready made stuff!  So no more cheating from me!

You will need:

  • 1 shortcrust pastry tart shell 11 inches (recipe to follow)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 leeks finely sliced (and rinsed very well) the weight of the leeks should be approx 550g
  • 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard
  • approx 100g of ham hock (or if using prosciutto about 3 slices cut up small
  • 2 teaspoons of grated Gruyere cheese (or Cheddar if preferred)
  • 2 medium eggs (beaten) in a jug
  • 1/2 cup of double cream
  • make up the volume in the jug of eggs and double cream, using single cream to reach 350 mls
  • a pinch of salt and about 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1.  Melt butter in large pan and cook leeks, stirring occasionally until softened.
2.  Brush pastry shell base with Dijon mustard so that all surface is covered
3.  Spread leeks over the Dijon mustard to cover the bottom of the tart shell
4.  Sprinkle the top of the leeks with the ham hock (or Prosciutto)
5.  Whist together the eggs, cream, salt and pepper, and pour over the leeks and ham hock, then sprinkle the grated cheese over the top
6.  Bake for 30-35 mins or until golden, on 180 C (Fan) - please reliable conversion for other ovens


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