Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pancetta Baby Tomato & Herbs Tart


For a while I thought I will never come back here and blog. Throughout the whole week since my last post, I have been busy working out on my new diet and exercise plan that I barely have energy left to cook and let alone, blog about anything. I have been plump and big all my life and something just hit me this year that I want all the fats all gone from my body for good and just intuitively, I am pushing myself to the stage that I would never thought I can survive and yet I am actually staying longer and longer on my threadmill each day. I cannot say I love my threadmill but it is just part of my life now, love it or not, it is here to stay and I better learn to appreciate it.

I baked this tart for a playdate today and it was very good with a nice textured tart case made of a combination of flour and whole wheat flour. Crumbly and sandy, it just held the filling perfectly and with lots of thyme and curly Parsley, the tart itself is lovely on a warm spring or summer day. Pancetta is Italian bacon and I pan fried it with the herbs prior to putting it inside the tart to bake. This will avoid the bacon from cooking inside the egg and cream mixture which will drip out its fat and soak up the base of the tart.


Recipe :

Ingredients :
Pastry:
50g Whole Wheat Flour
100g All Purpose Flour
6 tbsp cold butter, cut into pieces
1 large egg

Filling:
2 large eggs
7 oz (210ml) Heavy Cream
1 tbsp thyme
1 tbsp curly parsley
4oz sliced Pancetta, cut to thin strips
15 to 18 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
Black Pepper to season

Method:
Pastry Tart:
1)Put both type of flour and the butter pieces into the food processor. Process till resemble coarse crumbs.
2)Add in egg and process till a soft dough forms. Remove and flour lightly the working surface.
3)Grease an 8 inch removable base tart pan and trace a circle onto the parchment paper. Cut out the circle. Preheat oven to 425F.
4)Roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thick. Transfer and line the greased tart pan. Tuck in the sides with your fingers and cut excess with a small knife. Poke the bottom part with a fork. Line with the parchment paper circle and fill with baking beans.
5)Bake for 7 mins, remove from oven and remove the baking beans and parchment paper. Return to oven to bake for another 7 mins. Remove from the oven and lower the temperature to 325F.

Filling:
1)Heat the frying pan with 1 tsp of cooking oil. Pan fry the Pancetta pieces with the thyme and cruly parsley. Pan fry till dry, about 5 mins. Remove and place on kitchen paper towel to soak up grease.
2)Beat the eggs and the heavy cream together, season with black pepper.
3)Scatter the Pancetta and herbs inside the tart case. Distribute the tomato pieces, with some cut sides facing up. Slowly pour the egg and cream mixture into the tart case to fill it up. Place the tart pan onto another large shallow pan.
4)Bake for 35 mins till set. Remove from the oven and serve warm. Garnish with more thyme.

Serves : 4 to 5 persons


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