Chard & raisin tarts with almond topping

chard, raisin and almond tarts

Last night was something of a momentous occasion here at the test kitchens of The Ordinary. If you’re following along at home, you may remember that I recently made some forays into the experimental realm of savory almond custard. I lay awake thinking “if it doesn’t have sugar in it, can you still call it frangipane?” (I wish this was a joke!) And my first effort, though tasty, didn’t really let the savory almond custard shine. Well…last night I made these little tartlets. They have chard and raisins (big eye-roll – again, Claire? Oh, yes.) they have rosemary, they have garlic. They have mozzarella (secret melty cheese!!). And they have this almond custard – ground almonds, butter, eggs, a smicker of balsamic, a smicker of white wine. It turned out so nice! Crispy on top, soft in the middle, and very delicious! I’m sorry to sound so pleased with myself, but I am quite proud, because I really didn’t know how it would turn out. It could have been a completely disaster. I hate when dinner is a complete disaster. You could bake this as one large tart, if you preferred. And you could really use any kind of cheese you like (or not cheese at all) I thought about using gruyere or goat or cheddar. But I wanted something mild and salty to balance the sweet strong flavors, and mozzarella filled the bill.

cross section of tart

Here’s Joe Strummer with Digging the New. The new culinary technique, that is! (Unless people have been making this for hundreds of years. Won’t I feel foolish!)


PASTRY

2 cups flour
1 stick butter – frozen
1 egg
zest of 1/2 a lemon
1 t salt
black pepper
ice water

Combine the flour, salt, pepper and lemon zest. Grate the butter in. Add enough ice water to pull it into a ball. Wrap in foil or plastic and put it in the fridge to chill.

THE CHARD

1/2 of a large bunch of chard (3 or 4 cups raw, about 2 cups cooked) stems removed, roughly chopped
1 T olive oil
1 or 2 t rosemary, finely chopped
1 t basil
1/2 cup golden raisins soaked in warm water for about 10 minutes
1 small clove of garlic, very finely minced
salt and plenty of black pepper

Warm the olive oil. Add the garlic and herbs. Cook for a minute or two, then add the chard. Cook till it’s wilted. Throw in a few tablespoons of water if it starts to dry out. Add the raisins and continue to cook till it’s quite soft and the pan is fairly dry. Set it aside to cool for a few minutes, then chop the chard and raisins.

THE ALMOND CUSTARD

1 cup sliced almonds
2/3 cup flour
2 eggs
6 T very soft butter
1 T brown sugar
1/2 t. salt
2 t balsamic
2 t white wine
lots of black pepper

Process the almonds and the flour till the almonds are quite finely ground.

Cream the butter in a big bowl. Add the sugar, balsamic and white wine and mix well. Stir in the egg. Then add the flour, almonds, salt and pepper. Mix well. It should be a nice thick batter.

1 cup finely cubed or grated mozzarella.

Decide if you’re making one big tart or a few smaller ones. This recipe makes just the right amount to make six large muffins. (Are they called Texas-sized? I think they are. I think that’s funny)

Grease and flour your muffin tins or cake pan. Preheat the oven to 400. Break the dough into six pieces and roll each into a circle. Press into the muffin tin, and use a fork to crimp the edges and make them look pretty. Blind bake for 10 or 15 minutes till it’s not squishy any more. I had to go in and press on the insides of the muffin tins to make the dough go back up to the top. Hopefully you won’t have to do that!

Divide the chard/raisin mixture into six and spoon into the pastry shells. Sprinkle a small handful of cheese over each. Spoon the almond batter on top of the cheese. A heaping spoonful in each one. Smooth it over.

Bake at 400 for about 1/2 an hour, till the top is brown and crispy-ish.

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4 thoughts on “Chard & raisin tarts with almond topping

  1. Pingback: Hazelnut, pear, chocolate tart | Out of the Ordinary

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  3. Pingback: Broccoli rabe with ginger, apricots & cashews | Out of the Ordinary

  4. Pingback: Tomato and artichoke tart with walnut custard | Out of the Ordinary

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