Do you all recall that this week is Veg: River Cottage Everyday week on Delicieux? If not, check out the first post, Mushroom Risoniotto in which you will find that I am giving away a copy of the fantastic new book from Hugh Fearnley-Whittinstall called River Cottage Veg Everyday.
So today is the second recipe from Veg: River Cottage Everyday I’ve chosen to share with you. What caught my attent with this recipe was the unusual use of lettuce baked into a tart. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never had cooked lettuce before, so I thought that a Lettuce and Spring Onion Tart sounded unusual enough to try.
Gem lettuce, also called baby cos lettuce, are quickly fried in butter and oil before being placed inside a tart shell. Spring onions are also fried gently and added to the tart along with cheddar cheese and a mixture of eggs and cream, which is then baked for 35 minutes until golden.
When I first informed my fiance I was making a Lettuce Tart he looked at me strangely, but as he always does he said he was willing to give it a go. So as I served the tart for dinner last night it was with some trepidation we took our first bite, but Hugh hadn’t lead us astray and we were both relieved to find we liked it. In fact we liked it so much we went back for seconds! If that’s not an endorsement I don’t know what is!
Have you ever eaten cooked lettuce before? What did you think of it?
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for your chance to win a copy of Hugh’s River Cottage Veg Everyday!
- 250g of plain (all purpose) flour
- a pinch of sea salt
- 125g of chilled unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- about 75ml of cold milk
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 4 gem (baby cos) lettuce hearts, trimmed and quartered
- 15g of butter
- 250g of spring onions, trimmed and cut into chunky slices
- 100g of cheddar or hard goats cheese, grated
- 2 large eggs plus 2 egg yolks
- 250ml of double cream
- 200ml of milk
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper to season
- Start by making the pastry. Using a food processor add the flour, salt and butter to the bowl of the food processor and process until the butter resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Add the milk, little by little, until the pastry just comes together. Turn out onto a piece of cling film and form into a disk and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180 Celsius (350 fahrenheit) and roll out the pastry until it’s quite thin and large enough to line a 25cm tart tin. Line the tart tin and trim the edges.
- Line with foil and top with beans or pie weights and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the weights and return to the oven for another 10 to 15 minuts, or until the pastry is just starting to colour.
- To make the filling, place a large frying pan over a medium heat and add the oil. Add the lettuce and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the cut surface of the lettuce is just beginning to colour before adding the butter. Cook until the butter is melted and then using a slotted spoon remove from the pan and arrange in the tart shell.
- Reduce the heat and add the spring onions to the pan and saute gently for 5 minutes before adding to the tart shell.
- Top the lettuce and spring onions with the grated cheese.
- Add the eggs to a bowl and lightly whisk before adding the cream and milk. Whisk until combined and season generously with salt and pepper before pouring into the tart shell.
- Bake for 35 minutes, or until golden and serve warm or at room temperature.