Pea, asparagus and goat’s cheese tart with thyme pastry

Pea, asparagus and goat’s cheese tart with thyme pastry

By
From
Leiths How to Cook
Serves
6
Photographer
Peter Cassidy

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 quantity Rich shortcrust pastry, using herb variation and made using thyme
extra flour, to dust

For the filling

Quantity Ingredient
150g fresh podded or frozen peas
150g asparagus spears
100g soft goat’s cheese
3 eggs
300ml double cream
salt
ground white pepper

Method

  1. Roll out the chilled pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 3 mm thickness and use to line a 24 cm loose-based flan tin or flan ring set on a baking sheet. Cover with cling film and chill in the fridge until firm to the touch. Wrap and chill any leftover pastry to use for repairs. Heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the peas in boiling salted water until tender, 3–4 minutes, then refresh in cold water. Snap off the woody ends of the asparagus, cut the spears into 7–8 mm pieces, leaving the tips a little longer, then cook in boiling water for 2–3 minutes, depending on thickness, and refresh. Break the goat’s cheese into small pieces.
  3. Blind bake the pastry for 15–20 minutes, then remove the cartouche and beans and bake for a further 5 minutes, or until the pastry looks dry and feels sandy to the touch. Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 150°C.
  4. Put the eggs and cream into a small bowl and mix well with a fork. Pass this mixture through a sieve into a clean medium bowl.
  5. Add the peas, asparagus and cheese to the egg and cream mixture. Taste and season with salt and white pepper.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, spoon the peas, asparagus and cheese into the pastry case; they should half-fill the case. Pour the egg and cream mixture over the filling, making sure the pastry case is as full as possible.
  7. Carefully transfer to a shelf in the lower third of the oven and bake the tart for 40–50 minutes until the custard is set. To check, give it a little shake; there should be no violent wobble in the centre and the filling should be a pale yellow colour and just a little soft in the centre. (An overcooked filling will feel springy to the touch and will rise up.)
  8. Allow to cool slightly on the baking sheet, then remove the side of the tin, if using, and slide the tart onto a wire rack, or lift off the flan ring after transferring.

Variation

  • For a lighter version, replace half the double cream with half-fat crème fraîche.

A note on seasoning with pepper…

  • We use ground white pepper in egg custards as freshly ground black pepper can look unsightly if not ground fine enough, but if you prefer the flavour of black and don’t mind the visual effect, feel free to use that instead.
Tags:
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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