The most expensive tart so far. You will not see any black truffles or real caviar, but not very popular in UK green leaf vegetable called sorrel. Actually considered less a vegetable and more herb in some countries. Where do I start, where do I begin this story about the most expensive tart I have made so far...
I love sorrel, which is very popular in Poland and you can possibly pick some up from very random fields or meadows. If I can get hold of some precooked chopped sorrel in the jar I always use it to make one of our favourite soups - sorrel soup with hard boiled egg.
I did not hesitate to ask about sorrel my local veg and fruit supplier on the local market, that is held every Friday in the town where I work. They offer a wide selection of fresh fruit and veg, but I was not surprised or disappointed that they did not have any sorrel, because I realise that this is not very popular veg in UK. I have asked the veggie boss if he sells sorrel at all and he said that he can order me some for next week. I was extremely happy because I could go ahead with my sorrel cooking plan.
Next Friday I have come back to my local market with a big smile on my face (I would possibly whistle if I only knew how to do it) and the veggie boss turned to me saying: six fifty, love! I could not tell you what my facial expression was but I tried to hold a big smile, pay and just walk away with 600g bag of sorrel. Just go...
When I got over the price of this veg (just that you can compare and realise what a horror situation is was: stewing beef in local butchers costs around ₤6.50/kg!) I have checked the packaging just to see if it was grown and picked by English Queen, as the price would suggest. Actually it was not, but is was grown in Israel and packed in Yorkshire. I have come back and asked whether I can order ENGLISH ONE, that will not cost me a fortune. Veggie boss said, that season for English one starts in about week, or two...
I often make decisions rashly, based on my mood or emotions. I was dying to eat some sorrel so I ordered some, few days before the season. After all I have to admit that this sorrel tart was definitely worth it.
Makes rectangular loose bottom tart dish (35x13x2.5cm), serves 2-3
350g ready made, rolled puff pastry
approx. 30g butter
2 garlic cloves
100g goats' cheese ( I used chevre log)
4 rashes of parma ham or prosciutto
freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200 C.
Line the tart dish with the puff pastry, cover with some baking paper and ceramic baking beans (or dried beans or coins) and blind bake for about 15 minutes. It is the process of baking a pie crust or other pastry without the filling. Blind baking is necessary when it will be filled with an unbaked filling or when the filling has a shorter bake time than the crust. Blind baking also prevents the crust from becoming soggy from its filling.
Wash, dry and chop the sorrel finely.
In a pan melt the butter, add chopped shallots and fry over a medium heat until soft. Next add the chopper garlic and sorrel to the pan and fry for another 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. This filling could be too wet, if so leave it on the sift for few minutes.
Remove the pre baked base from the oven and reduce the temperature to 175 C. Cover the edges with tin foil - it will prevent from browning and drying. Fill the form with sorrel filling and stick the crumbled cheese into it. Bake until the top is golden and firm.
Remove from the oven and top with some shredded ham. Serve immediately.
I think this should be a great tart for vegetarians too, so next time I will skip the ham and add some poached egg on the top of each small individual sorrel tart.