Spring vegetable tart with mustard cream and watercress
If you're looking for an impressive vegetarian centrepiece to a spring meal this lovely light recipe from Signe Johansen's and Peter's Yard's book Smörgåsbord, is perfect though if you serve it on its own I think it would probably only feed 4-6! (Only 4 in my family!)
Signe writes: "Wonderful as a vegetarian centrepiece for a springtime smörgåsbord, or as an accompaniment to fish and meat dishes, this puff pastry tart using seasonal baby veg tastes as delicious as it looks.
1 x 320g (11oz) pack ready-rolled puff pastry
4 eggs, 3 whole and 1 yolk
100g (3½oz) asparagus tips, cut into 2cm (¾ inch) batons
6 baby courgettes, halved lengthways
3 baby aubergines, quartered lengthways
3 baby leeks, sliced into rounds about 2cm (¾ inch) thick
2 tbsp olive oil
100g (3½oz) crème fraîche
150g (5½oz) soft goat’s cheese, crumbled
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
small bunch of dill, finely chopped
2 tarragon sprigs, leaves stripped and finely chopped
2 large handfuls of watercress, to serve
for the dressing:
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1 tsp white wine vinegar
Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan (400°F), Gas Mark 6.
Unroll the pastry onto a large baking tray lined with baking parchment and lightly score a 1cm (½ inch) border all the way around. Beat the egg yolk and brush it over the border to glaze. Toss the prepared vegetables with the oil and spread out on a second tray. Place both in the oven, with the vegetables on the top shelf, for 20 minutes, until the pastry has puffed up and the veg is just tender. Press down the centre of the pastry with the back of a spoon.
In a bowl, mix the 3 eggs with the crème fraîche, goat’s cheese, mustard, the herbs and some salt and pepper. Spread over the tart base, avoiding the border. Arrange the veg on top then return to the oven for about 20 minutes until the filing has set.
Make a dressing by whisking together the oil, mustard, vinegar and a little salt and pepper. Remove the tart from the oven and cool a little before scattering over the watercress and drizzling with the dressing.
What to drink: I always associate mustart with Chablis so would probably go for that but any crisp dry unoaked white like a Gavi or even a good pinot grigio would be delicious
Smörgåsbord: Deliciously simple modern Scandinavian recipes by Peter's Yard with Signe Johansen is published by Kyle Books, £18.99, www.octopusbooks.co.uk Photography: Ali Allen
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