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Tuesday 11 February 2014

Sluttishly Vegetarian: Roasted Fennel & Feta Tart

Tart, in a heart! Well we couldn't have a NORMAL shaped tart when chocolate-cherub-flower-love-day is just around the corner. In other respects, this is a light and creamy, yet savoury offering, perfect for a mid-week supper or if your beloved is vegetarian. You could even make it into four mini tarts, for a fancy starter. I love fennel's sweet, slightly aniseed flavour, but you could replace it with red pepper or leeks if you prefer. (We won't be offended).

Roasted Fennel & Feta Tart
You will need:
  • 250g ready-made puff pastry
  • 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • Glug olive oil
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Sea salt
  • 1 free-range egg, plus another egg yolk
  • 250g mascarpone
  • Black pepper
  • 150g feta, crumbled
  • Parmesan for sprinkling (optional)
  • 1 tbsp milk
Make it!
  1. Preheat the oven to 190C / 375F / Gas mark 5. Lightly grease a springform tart tin. (I used a heart shaped one, awww, but an 18cm tin should do just fine). 
  2. Thinly slice the fennel vertically and place on a baking tray. Drizzle over the olive oil, lemon juice and a good pinch of salt. Roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes until tender. Remove to cool. 
  3. Meanwhile, roll out your puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to the thickness of 2mm. Cut to size for your tin, leaving an inch or so overhang. Press gently into the bottom and sides. Prick the bottom all over with a fork. 
  4. Place a sheet of greaseproof paper or similar over the bottom and weigh down with some baking beads or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven.
  5. Whisk together the eggs and mascarpone and half the feta, and few grinds of black pepper.
  6. Spoon into the tart case. Crumble over the remaining feta, then place the slices of roasted fennel on top.
  7. Sprinkle over a little parmesan (if using) and brush the edges of the pastry case with milk.
  8. Return to the oven for another 20 minutes, until the tart is set and golden. Cool in the tin for a few minutes, before turning onto a plate and serving.  

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