Asparagus, tomato and goat's cheese. This is one of Head Chef Sam's favourite vegetarian spring recipes on the menu at The Swan Inn, Somerset. Think vibrant colours, crispy pastry and bold flavours.
"I love making shortcrust pastry. It is great to get the kids involved, let them play with the off cuts, whilst learning about vegetables and delicious local ingredients." - Sam, Head Chef at The Swan Inn
For the pastry:
300g plain flour
150g salted butter
80g cold water
A large pinch of salt
For the filling:
125g mature cheddar
125g goat's cheese
4 large organic eggs
100g English asparagus
80g piccolo tomatoes
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
50ml whole milk
A handful of fresh basil leaves
A large pinch of salt
Good olive oil
Step 1: Start by making the pastry. Sift the flour, then rub butter and flour together to form a breadcrumb consistency. Add cold water and bring mixture together to form a dough. Shape into a ball, dust with flour, wrap with parchment, and rest in the fridge for 40 minutes.
Step 2: Set your oven to 190 degrees. Butter and flour a 9-inch tart tin. Then, dust your work surface, take the pastry from the fridge and roll out your pastry into 3mm round circle.
Step 3: Use your rolling pin to pick up your pastry and lay over your buttered tart tin. Gently press into the tin with the tips of your fingers - be careful not to tear it. Trim your pastry leaving a 20mm overlap, then gently tuck it in against the outside of the tin. Prick all over with a fork and line with parchment.
Step 4: Fill with baking beans (or whatever you can find ready to blind bake) and bake at 190 degrees for 20 minutes. Then take out parchment and beans and turn down to 160 degrees for 15 minutes. When out, cool for 10 minutes and set your oven to 180 degrees.
Step 5: To make the filling, add the eggs, milk and mustard to a bowl and whisk. Then add your grated cheddar, goat's cheese and salt.
Step 6: Slice the asparagus lengthways and blanch in boiling water for 30 seconds. Refresh in cold water then dry on kitchen paper. Slice the tomatoes in half and pick the basil leaves.
Step 7: Lay half of the asparagus in the bottom of the cooled tart case then top with the cheese and egg mix. before adding the rest of the asparagus, tomatoes and basil leaves. Drizzle with olive oil then bake for 30-40 minutes at 180 degrees.