This tart is made using the “baking blind” cooking method, if it is made like this there is less chance of it having a soggy bottom! (Please see my glossary section on baking blind for more detailed information).
To serve 4 people you will need:
- a 450 g, pack of ready rolled short-crust pastry sheets, Jus-rol.
- 1 tbsp olive oil.
- 1 large onion.
- 2 cloves of garlic.
- 2 tsps of dried basil.
- a little Salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- 3 medium sized courgettes.
- a quarter of a pint, 150 ml, double cream.
- 1 egg.
- 4 oz, 110 g, cheddar cheese.
- Pre-heat the oven to gas Mark 6, 400 f, 200 c, 180 fan.
- You will need a loose bottomed round flan or cake tin measuring approx. 20 to 23 cm, 8 or 9 inches in diameter, by 10 cm, 4 inches deep.
- First of all you are going to line the tin with the pastry sheets, overlapping the edges slightly if you need to join them. Trim away any excess pastry that’s hanging over the top edge of the rim of the tin with a small pointed knife. Keep the point down and the flat side of the blade pressed right up against the rim of the tin, turn the tin a little as you slide the knife round.
- Now, put the tin into the fridge for 30 minutes to chill the pastry.
- While the pastry is resting, prepare the filling.
- Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic.
- Wash, top and tail, then thinly slice the courgettes.
- Grate the cheese onto a large plate using the coarse side of a grater.
- Break the egg into a small jug, add the cream, and half the grated cheese, a teaspoon of basil, a shake of salt and a good grind of freshly ground black pepper. Stir well.
- Now you are going to bake the pastry case “blind”.
- Remove the pastry from the fridge. Line the pastry case with a sheet of greaseproof paper. Cover the paper lining with a good layer of either ceramic baking beans or dried peas.
- Bake “blind” for 15 to 20 minutes in the pre-heated oven until the pastry case feels firm to the touch and is lightly golden brown.
- While your pastry is baking, cook the filling.
- Put the olive oil in a medium sized saucepan and add the onion and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly to prevent them from sticking.
- Now add the courgettes and one teaspoon of basil, cook for a further 5 minutes until slightly soft, stirring occasionally to prevent them from sticking.
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
- When your pastry is cooked, remove the tin from the oven and take out the paper and beans.
- Turn down the oven slightly to gas Mark 4, 350 f, 180 c, 160 fan.
- Put the tin containing the pastry case onto a baking sheet with shallow sides so that it will be easier to lift into the oven, lessening any chance of spillage after you add the filling.
- Now, Spoon the courgette mixture evenly over the base of the pastry case, then carefully pour in the contents of the jug. This should fill the pastry case almost to the rim.
- Sprinkle the remaining grated cheese evenly over the top.
- Carefully lift the tart into the oven and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the filling feels firm but pliable when lightly pressed with your finger, then the mixture will be set and the top should look golden and you will hear it bubbling.
This tart is best eaten straight away and is nice either hot or cold.
Serve it with crusty bread and a mixed green leaf and tomato salad.