Smoked haddock, leek and chive tartlets
- March 2017
- Serves 4
- Hands-on time 30 min, oven time 40-45 min, plus chilling
Smoked haddock and leek is a classic combination, but when baked together in a creamy sauce and buttery pastry it makes a wonderful dinner party starter or light lunch.
- 40.6g (23.8g saturated)
- 42.3g (2.9g sugars)
- 30g butter
- 2 leeks, sliced
- Glug dry white wine
- 100ml fresh chicken or veg stock
- 4 fresh thyme sprigs
- 2 medium free-range eggs, beaten
- 100g half-fat crème fraîche
- 2 tbsp finely chopped chives
- 50g strong cheddar, grated
- 200g sustainable undyed smoked haddock, skinned and cut into even 2cm chunks
For the pastry
- 200g plain flour, plus extra to dust
- Large pinch cayenne pepper, plus a little extra to dust
- 100g butter, cut into cubes
- 1 free-range egg yolk, beaten
- 4½ tbsp cold water
You’ll also need…
- 4 x 10cm loose-bottomed fluted tart tins
- Make the pastry by whizzing the flour, cayenne, butter and some salt and pepper in a food processor until it resembles breadcrumbs. (If you don’t have a food processor, mix the ingredients in a mixing bowl, rubbing in the butter with your fingers.) Add the egg yolk and gradually pulse/mix in the cold water until the dough just starts to come together (you may not need it all). Tip out onto cling film, bring together into a ball, then wrap in the cling film. Chill for 30 minutes.
- Melt the 30g butter in a deep frying pan and gently cook the leeks, white wine, stock and thyme for 15-20 minutes until the leeks are tender and the liquid has reduced. Discard the thyme sprigs and set the pan aside.
- Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6. Divide the chilled pastry into 4 equal pieces and roll out on a lightly floured work surface (or between sheets of non-stick baking paper). Line each tart case with pastry, pressing into the edges/flutes, then trim and prick the bases all over with a fork. Line with non-stick baking paper and fill with baking beans, then chill for 10-15 minutes. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the beans and paper and bake for 5-10 minutes until the pastry feels sandy.
- Turn the oven down to 170°C/ 150°C fan/gas 3½. Mix the eggs with the crème fraîche, chives, cheddar and seasoning in a small bowl. Divide the leeks and smoked haddock evenly among the tart cases and place on a baking tray. Divide the egg mixture equally among the tarts and bake for 20 minutes until golden brown and set. Sprinkle with a little extra cayenne and serve with a green salad.
To save time you can use ready-made shortcrust pastry, but add 2 tsp grainy mustard to the filling to add flavour. These tartlets would make a great starter – use 6 x 8cm tins instead.
Look for sustainable undyed haddock that’s been smoked in brick chimneys over oak and beech chippings, which give it a special flavour. From fishmongers, large supermarkets and online.
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