Sunday, June 03, 2007

Tartes aux blettes ma façon

Tarte aux blettes, a kind of quiche with swiss chard, is, it seems, is a traditional dish from the South of France. What I present here is my version, adapted to my ideas du jour. I have seen many recipes which contained cream and eggs - so that might be the "real" way to make it. The dough with potatoes has its origins in Italy. I wish to point this out because an (anonymous) reader got very cross with me, saying that I shouldn't write about italian cooking since I clearly didn't have a clue what italian cooking was. The recipes I write about in this blog are rarely "pure-breed" but usually a mixture of several recipes or dishes I've tried. I never claim to present the one and only way of making something (which, incidentally, I believe does not exist when it comes to cooking) but simply one possibility. If my recipes appeal to you, that makes me very happy, if they don't, you simply ignore them. No harm done.

Tarte aux blettes ma façon
(serves six or more, depending whether you serve other things as well)

For the dough:

  • 300g starchy potatoes
  • 150g flour
  • 30 fresh yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large pinch of salt
For the swiss chard:
  • 1kg swiss chard
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons raisins, soaked in warm water
  • salt, pepper and nutmeg
Cook the whole potatoes until soft. Let cool for a few minutes and peel, then mash in a food mill or with a fork. Crumble the yeast into a little bowl and sprinkle with the sugar. Let stand for a minute, then mix with a spoon until the yeast is liquid. Add the flour, olive oil, salt and yeast to the potatoes and mix with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients come together. Knead vigourously for a few minutes. The dough should be soft but not sticky. You might need to add more flour - the exact amount depends on how much starch the potatoes contain. Put the dough back into the bowl, cover and let stand for about 1 hour.

Wash the chard and cut off the green leaves. Chop stems and leaves. Boil separately in a large pan for a few minutes (the leaves will only take a short time) until done. Drain and set aside. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and sauté the garlic until soft but not browned. Add the swiss chard and the drained raisins and cook for another three minutes. Season with salt, freshly ground pepper and nutmeg and set aside to cool.

Knock back the dough and roll out on a floured surface (about 2 cm thickness). Transfer onto a prepared baking sheet and let stand for 20 minutes. Distribute the swiss chard on top and bake in the preheated oven (200°) for about 30-40 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Serve tepid or cold, preferably with a glass of well chilled white wine

P.S. This makes a very large tarte, suitable for a buffet or a drinks party with lots of guests.

P.P.S. Dough containing potato will inevitably be softer and chewier than the flour-only variety. You might want to omit the potatoes if you like your tarte with a crisp dough. Or try baking the dough first, like a focaccia and add the chard afterwards (I haven't tried that yet, I only read about it this morning, but I will sometimes soon).


Anonymous said...

No need to justify yourself, Honeybee. Your recipes are great, and fusion food rules. So who cares about what Italian or Swiss or French cooking actually is?

The recipe looks tasty and sooo much better than the porridge one. ;-)
Oups, did I reveal myself?

wheresmymind said...

Grat use of swiss chard!