LEEK & BACON TART (serves 4)
For the pastry
200g plain flour
100g cold salted butter
1 egg yolk
3 tbsp water
pinch of sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
For the filling
1 tbsp olive oil
100g thickly sliced smoked bacon
3 medium leeks, halved and finely sliced
1 large banana shallot, chopped finely
100ml Greek yoghurt
100ml single cream
freshly ground black pepper
60g Gouda cheese, grated.
Put the flour, butter and seasoning into your food processor and process until the contents resemble fine breadcrumbs. Add the egg yolk and the water and blitz again, until the contents form a clump.
Decant out onto a large piece of cling film and form into a ball and cover with another big piece of cling film. Then, roll the pastry out flat until sufficiently large to line your 8 inch pie dish, or tin.
Remove the top layer of cling film and drop the pastry into the dish, pastry side down. Ease the pastry into the dish with the cling film attached and once securely lining your dish, remove the cling film. Trim the pastry to fit and crimp the edges in a pretty pattern.
Pre-heat the oven to 180degC/350degF/Gas 4.
Cut a piece of baking parchment to slightly bigger than your pastry lined dish, then crumple it into a ball and smooth out on top of the pastry. You'll find crumpling it like this allows it to fit the dish better. Tip in a good quantity of baking beans (to prevent the pastry from bubbling) and place the pastry case into the oven to part bake for 15 minutes. Once the time is up, remove from the oven, remove the parchment paper and baking beans and set the pastry case aside to cool slightly while you prepare the filling.
Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and add the bacon. Fry over a high heat until all the water has evaporated and the bacon is just beginning to turn golden. Reduce the heat to moderate and add the leeks, shallots and more black pepper. You may need to add a little more olive oil at this stage - I use a little extra virgin olive oil for flavour. Once the leeks are softened, remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly.
Place the yoghurt, cream, eggs and black pepper into a bowl and whisk to combine.
Add a small amount of the grated cheese to the bowl, along with the leek mixture from the frying pan. Stir quickly and gently, to combine. Then, pour the filling into the pastry case, taking care to distribute the leeks and bacon evenly.
Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the surface of the leeks and put the whole thing into the oven (middle shelf) for some 35-40 minutes, or until the surface is nicely golden and the centre feels firm and not at all squishy.
Set aside for 10 minutes or so to settle before serving, or alternatively allow to cool and serve at room temperature with salad.