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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

leek tart with goat cheese

leek goat cheese tart

I really am loving Molly Wizenberg's (AKA Orangette) "Cooking Life" column in Bon Appetit. She is such an incredible food writer - she's so over the top with her descriptions (I can relate). Her column in the October 2008 issue was probably my favorite, featuring 2 recipes in 1, for leek confit and a leek and goat cheese tart. Based on her recommendation, I was putting leftover leek confit on everything for days (including scrambled eggs - who would have guessed?). The tart was perfect, even though I used fresh goat cheese instead of aged.

Grocery list: (for the leek confit) 1/2 stick butter, 4 large leeks; (for the crust) 3/4 tsp apple cider vinegar, 1.5 cups AP four, 3/4 tsp salt, 1 stick butter plus 1 T; (filling) 1/2 cup whole milk, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, 1/2 crumbled goat cheese (original recipe calls for aged goat cheese, such as Bucheron).

pie crust for leek tart ready to bake

Make the crust by pulsing the flour and salt with butter (cold, and cut up into small cubes) in a food processor, until it has the consistency of coarse meal. Mix 4 T ice water with the cider vinegar in separate bowl, then add this slowly to the machine while it's running. The dough should start to make clumps (if not, add another T or 2 of ice water). Remove from the processor, shape into a ball, wrap with saran wrap, and refrigerate for 2 hours. Roll it out on a floured surface, and transfer to a tart pan. As you can see, I only had a pie pan, so this technically was a leek pie...

baked crust for leek tart

Cover your crust with foil, and fill it with dried beans or rice (to weigh down the crust). Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes; remove the foil and weights and continue to bake until it's golden - another 20 minutes or so. Allow to cool while you work on the filling.

leek confit

To make 2 cups of leek confit (you'll only need 1.5 cups for the tart - the leftovers are great with scrambled eggs!), chop the leeks in half lengthwise, then into 1/4 inch slices. Wash thoroughly. Put 1/2 stick of butter in a dutch oven and melt over medium-low heat. Add the leeks (about 5 cups washed and chopped), plus 2T water and a pinch of salt. Cover and cook on low, stirring every few minutes, for 25 minutes. Uncover and allow any excess water to cook out - about 3-5 more minutes of cooking time.

ingredients for leek tart

Whisk the egg + 1 yolk with the milk, cream, and a pinch of salt.

layering leeks and goat cheese in tart

Spread 1/4 cup crumbled cheese over the bottom of the tart, then pour 1.5 cups of leek confit over. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese over the top, then pour the milk and egg mixture over top. Bake for 35-40 minutes at 375 degrees. You'll know it's done when you shake the pan and the middle of the tart is jiggly but firm (not liquid-y) - yes, these are scientific terms. I also had a bit of crust around the rim that I worried would burn, so I covered the edges of the pan carefully with foil, like you do with an apple pie. It turned out great this way.

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