This recipe teams fenugreek leaves with ricotta and a buttery shortcrust pastry. Frozen fenugreek leaves are available from Indian food shops, selected greengrocers and farmers’ markets.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions, thinly sliced
- 100 g (2 cups) baby spinach leaves
- 150 g frozen fenugreek leaves (see Note), thawed
- 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- 185 ml (¾ cup) pouring cream
- 150 g fresh ricotta
- mixed tomato salad (optional), to serve
- 225 g (1½ cups) plain flour, plus extra, to dust
- 125 g cold butter, chopped
- 1 egg yolk
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Chilling time 30 minutes
Cooling time 10 minutes
To make pastry, process flour, butter and a pinch of salt in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add egg yolk and 2 tbsp iced water, and process until mixture just comes together. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and shape into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to rest.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Dust work surface with extra flour. Roll out pastry to a 30 cm round and use to line the base and side of a 24 cm fluted tart pan. Using a small knife, trim the excess pastry and discard. Place a large piece of baking paper over pastry and fill with dried beans or rice. Bake for 20 minutes or until dry, then remove beans and paper, and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until golden. Add spinach and fenugreek leaves, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until leaves are just wilted. Transfer to a bowl and set aside until needed.
Reduce oven temperature to 170°C. Whisk together eggs and cream in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Spread spinach mixture over tart shell, top with spoonfuls of ricotta and pour over the egg mixture. Bake tart for 30 minutes or until the centre is set. Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then cut into wedges and serve with tomato salad, if desired.
• Frozen fenugreek leaves are from Indian food shops and selected greengrocers and farmers’ markets. You can substitute fenugreek seeds for the leaves and increase the quantity of the spinach to 150 g. Soak ½ tsp fenugreek seeds in 1 tbsp water for 3 hours, then, using a mortar and pestle, lightly crush the seeds.
As seen in Feast magazine, Mar 2012, Issue 7. For more recipes and articles, pick up a copy of this month's Feast magazine or check out our great subscriptions offers here.
Photography by John Laurie.