Saturday, 12 April 2014

More from the Tart Tin - Quiche Lorraine

Fine, I have a few more things lined up coming from my loose bottom tart tin, simply can't help it. Now it doesn't always have to be sweet, although at first glance that might be fine with me, but I know better that it's far too dangerous to have to much of sweets. Since I don't always get the chance to share finished products, I have to balance the cake and sweets department better with the savoury department.
For that cause I have some Quiche Lorraine for you today, even more balanced with a salad on the side.

Still we get the chance to use the loose bottom tart tin. Oh, I can't exactly remember what the salad was all about, but I have the details of the Quiche Lorraine for you.

For the pastry:
250 g flour
1 egg
A pinch of salt
4 tbsp. water
125 g butter
For the filling:
125 g bacon, cut into small pieces
200 g crème fraîche
4 eggs
2 leeks, cut into rings
Salt and pepper
150 g grated cheese

Carefully put together the pastry by rubbing the butter into the flour ... or the other way around ... so you get a mixture resembling bread crumbs. Don't forget the salt. Then add the egg and the water to bring the dough together. Pop it into the fridge for 30 minutes.
For the filling or topping or whatever else you like to call it, first briefly fry your bacon in a pan. Transfer it to a bowl and mix it with the remaining ingredients for the filling. There is no other magic to i. Just do it and thoroughly mix it all together.

Get your oven ready to 180 ºC and butter your tart tin. Oh, right get the dough into the tin and then blind bake it for 15 minutes. I always use some chickpeas for that. Their fate is to remain reserved for blind baking, never to be eaten.
Remove your blind pastry ... eh ... blind baked pastry and top it with the filling or ... fill t with the topping and get it back into the oven for let's say 20-25 minutes or until the quiche lorraine has taken a lovely colour.

Then, I reckon, the only thing left to do is to have your meal. As I suggested before, together with a nice salad and, if you are  in the mood for it, with a glass of wine. For that, of course you have to be a person appreciating wine. Otherwise you might want to take a beer.

It's always something lovely to have a quiche lorraine from time to time. Now they also work better for me and I can enjoy them even more. Before I didn't use to add leeks, but I think they are a good addition.

Still I have more to come from my loose bottom tart tin. Anyway, what would you bake with it?

Monday, 7 April 2014

Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart

Finally I managed to buy a loose bottom tart tin. I was looking for it every ... I went to and thought they might have one. Now I managed. Therefore I can go for it and bake madly as ... eh ... I want to.
The first thing on my list of things I wanted to bake was a frangipane tart. This almond filling taste so gorgeous, at least in my mind. Here we go then. Over enthusiastically as I am at times I had stocked myself with lemons that I didn't actually have a plan for. Apart from that there was some basil growing on the windowsill, which wasn't too sure about whether to die or still live on happy ever after ... or rather until dying a natural basil's death of being used up in cooking.
To cut a long story short, before I go overboard here, the Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart was about to rise from the ashes of the basil ... no, the basil wasn't that bad, in fact it wasn't looking bad at all, but that could have changed any day now, kind of unstable that herb is.
Anyway, top talking, start baking ... Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart.

For the pastry:
150 g butter
100 g sugar
Pinch of salt
250 g flour
Zest of 1 lemon
Handful of chopped up basil leaves (use more, if you need more basil in your life)
1 egg
For the frangipane filling:
1 egg
100 g ground almonds
100 g butter
90 g sugar
Juice of one lemon (how would that lemon have looked otherwise)
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
100 g icing sugar
Apart from that:
100 g raspberry jam
Icing sugar
Melted chocolate

We like to start with the pastry for the Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart. First of all we cream the butter and the sugar so that you don't see any loose sugar grains anymore, but instead everything should have been assimilated by the butter. While you are at it sneak the salt in, too.
Next goes in the flour. Sometimes I like to massage it in until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. At other days I simply go for it and add the remaining ingredients as well. In this case, the lemon zest, basil and the egg.
Carefully bring all the ingredients together into a fine lump of dough. Wrap it into clingfilm and place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
After that it's time to get your loose bottom tart tin (I love it now) ready. Rub some butter all over the tin and push the dough into the tin. Well, you could roll out the dough first and then go for it. The good thing with this kind of pastry is, you can still push it everywhere you want, even if the rolled out dough tears.
Whatever, that same pastry now needs some serious blind baking for about 15 minutes at 180 ºC.
Meanwhile, we can make the frangipane filling. Honestly, I don't want to make any fuss about it. Get a sufficiently sized bowl and mix all the ingredients for the frangipane filling thoroughly.
The 15 minutes of the blind baking should be over at one point ... about 15 minutes after they started, I reckon, unless you prove me wrong here.
Here a little picture, I tried to put together, showing the different steps of the tart until the product is finished.

To follow those steps, spread the raspberry jam on the blind baked pastry and after that try to top it with the frangipane filling. At least that was the idea originally. During that process the jam and the frangipane filling rather might mix a bit. No worries, though, it's part of the package.
Having now an empty bowl, where the frangipane filling used to be and a filled pastry case, I'd say it's a rather good time to put the tart into the oven, which is now at 190 ºC.
Further 18 minutes will bake things right.
Sadly, as some might see it, you have to cool down the Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart.
At this point it doesn't look too gorgeous as would everyone agree on, I suppose.
Have some icing sugar on it. Oh, that's better, but ... we can do even better. We need something that'll always do: CHOCOLATE. No, not that much, just sprinkle a few fine lines on top of the tart ... blob. Great, no fine lines! We can attempt a few fine lines and put here and there some occasional blobs to make it appear to the beholder it was on purpose. Said and done ...

... I am rather pleased with the outcome. While being at it, I just simulated the case I would have a guest for tea time enjoying this delicious tart together with me. I even put on a candle. At other times it might give the impression of being romantic, but ...
I simply wanted a yummy frangipane tart. 
Now have a closer look at the tart in the next picture and have a guess of what it reminded my malfunctioning brain! 

Anyway, the taste of the frangipane tart was so temptingly dangerously good I even could here the tart calling from the kitchen: "Come and get me, get another slice ...!" Great!
Then it wasn't even a shame that it didn't taste that much of basil. You get more taste from the raspberry jam and the frangipane filling. However, there is a slight hint of basil. Therefore, if you have the feeling, there hasn't been enough basil in your life, feel free to increase the amount until the dough has the colour of your lawn, reminds you of Ireland or until you are well pleased with it.

Things were fine with me. Right, apart from the fact of what I had to do with the tart in the course of days that followed ... it wasn't my fault, was it? Yes,I could have, but I didn't.
However, have an even closer look and tell me ... right to my face ... how you could possibly resist a piece of that tart. 

So, once more, totally heart-broken and shattered I have to admit, it was all my fault entirely, for who has created this Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart ...

While still being in grief ...over various things, I can't change now anymore anyway, I like to move on and submit this Basil and Lemon Frangipane Tart to a cleverly devised selection of blog challenges, due to various reasons ...

Let's do it in alphabetical order then. I might not have used mint in this tart, although I could have, based on the behaviour of the mint on my windowsill, but I didn't want to have an ill-behaved Mint and Lemon Frangipane Tart. Karen from Lavender and Lovage said, it would be alright, if I use any kind of herb to join the Cooking with Herbs challenge, which I from the bottom of my heart want to do.

Cooking with Herbs Lavender and Lovage

That brings us already to the letter 'M' and Javelin Warrior's Made with Love Mondays. Just to make sure you can use homemade quick raspberry jam with raspberries and sugar, but since I couldn't get that many raspberries I had to go with the nearly as good as homemade raspberry jam to have a from scratch recipe for the Made with Love Mondays.


Then I like to talk again about the lemon and the basil. I didn't want any of those two go to waste, that is let them die before I get the chance to use them. Therefore, I like to add this to the No Waste Food Challenge, which is brought to us by Elizabeth from Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary. However, this month, the challenge is hosted by Ness from Jibber Jabber UK.

So, if you want to count in, that I ate the whole cake as well to the not wasting food, then ... oops. Now it's out!

Quickly, on with the fourth and final challenge. We go back to Karen, although it is a joined challenge by Lavender and Lovage and The Hedgecombers. However, this month it's Karen's turn and the chosen theme is: Jams, Curds and Preserves. Hopefully, at this point you don't have to guess for too long which of the three I used in my recipe.

Tea Time Treats Lavender and Lovage

Having reached this point of the post, I wish to say thank you to all those, who have continued reading this far into the post. You are wonderful people, thank you for being out there!!! Really, I mean it, it's not just a phrase. I hope to see you again. You can bring friends, too.

Now I have some work to do. Whatever that may be ...