Saturday, September 3, 2011

Torta Rustica - Rustic Tart

Torta Rustica continues our baking journey!  It is a golden pastry crust which envelopes layers of vegetables, cheeses and ham.  For a nice vegetarian version you can substitute the ham for cooked slices of eggplant.

Torta Rustica

  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 large red peppers, peeled, sliced into wide strips
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 250 grams of cooked chopped spinach
  • 1/4 teaspoon of grated nutmeg
  • salt to taste
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh breadcrumbs
  • 30g freshly grated cheese
  • Ready made puff pastry
  • 250g of cheese, sliced thinly
  • 250g ham, sliced thinly
  • Egg wash, made from egg yolk beaten with 2 teaspoons water

  • 5 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
Heat oil and butter in a large saute pan, add pepper strips, saute until just tender.  Remove from the pan and set aside.  Add onion and garlic to the pan, cook 2- mins.  Squeeze all the moisture from the spinach and add to the pan, cook for approx. 5 mins, add nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste.  Put the mixture in bowl, stir in egg, breadcrumbs and 3og of cheese, set aside to cool.

To make the omelette - beat eggs with three tablespoons of cheese to combine.  Heat half the butter in 20-22cm saute pan and make a flat omelette with remaining butter and eggs place on a plate, set aside to cool/

While the omelette and spinach are cooling, prepare pastry.  Take out pastry sheet and cut a 35cm diameter, put the rest to the side.  Line a shallow missing bowl (with approx. 30cm diameter) with plastic wrap.  Place pastry circle in the bowl, carefully pat against the sides.  Pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees.

When all the ingredients have cooled, begin to layer the torta.  Place one omelette in the base of the on top of the pastry.  Spread with half spinach, then half cheese, then half ham and all the red peppers.  Repeat layering in reverse, using the remaining ham, cheese, spinach, finish with other omelette.

Cut out remaining pastry in a circle large enough to cover filling.  Place on top of the filling, brush with egg wash around the edges.  Fold over the extra dough from larger circle (which will be the top crust) and make sure edges are tightly sealed.  Carefully invert onto baking sheet, remove bowl and plastic wrap.  Pinch up bottom of pastry between thumb and forefinger.  Glaze with egg wash.

Bake in the oven for approx, one hour or until crust is a deep golden.  Remove from the oven and let it settle for 20mins.

Then cut into wedges and enjoy!

Cocinar, comer  y ser feliz!

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