Garlic & Chives Cheshire Cheese Tartlets
These tasty Cheshire Cheese tartlets make a great starter on their own or a fancy restaurant style main course as shown in the picture served here with spiced roasted squash on a black quinoa and pearl barley, with warm green beans and wilted watercress and rocket with sesame oil and sunflower seeds.
Tartlets Ingredients makes 4/6 x 10cm mini tartlets
2 x Free range eggs the more golden the yokes the better
200ml Creme Fraiche, make it lighter with half fat.
2 x teaspoons of fresh chives
1/2 teaspoon of tarragon
100g shortcrust pastry or make your own if you have the time
150g grated or crumbled Cheshire Cheese or Black Bob
Salt & Pepper
4/6 x 10cm non stick tartlet tins
Pre-heat the oven to 200c or fan 180c.
In a jug whisk the Creme Fraiche and the eggs together and season with salt and black pepper. Finely chop the chives and tarragon and add them with the Cheese to the custard mixture.
Roll out the shortcrust pastry as thin as you can to the thickness of a 50p piece. Use a 12cm tartlet tin or cutter to make four discs suitable to fit a 10cm tartlet tin. Line the tartlet tins with the pastry and press into the fluted edges leaving overlapping pastry edges that can be trimmed after baking. Using a fork lighlty pierce the pastry base trying not to go all the way through the pastry. This is to prevent the pastry from puffing up when its blind baked. Cut out 4 sheets of grease proof paper and scrunch them up to make them easier to line the pastry tin then fill the lined tins with ceramic baking beans or rice. Bake blind for 10-15 minutes then remove the beans and paper and bake for another 5 minutes or until the pastry is golden. Allow the pastry to cool completely and carefully trim the edges of the pastry tins with a sharp knife.
Reduce the oven temperature down to 160c or fan 140c.Add equal amounts of cheese into each pastry tartlet and pour in the egg mixture. Place the tins onto a baking tray and top them up whilst in the oven to save spilling any. Bake the tartlets for 15-20 minutes keeping a close eye on them to ensure they do not brown too much.
Spiced Roasted Squash and Black Quinoa and Barley with
Warm Sesame Green Beans and Wilted Watercress Rocket with roasted sunflower seeds
Ingredients - Roasted Squash
1/2 deseeded squash chopped into 1cm cubes
1/2 large onion chopped to a fine dice
1 x clove of garlic crushed
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 x teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon of tumeric
1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
2 x teaspoons of fresh coriander added at the end
1 x tablespoon of olive oil
salt and pepper to season
Quinoa and Barley, Green Beans and Wilted Greens
Handful of green bean trimmed to 2cm length
Handful each of Watercress and Rocket
50g shelled sunflower seeds
100g of Quinoa and Barley or Cous Cous
1 x vegetable or chicken stock cube
1 x teaspoon sesame oil
salt and pepper to season
Method for spiced squash
Peel deseed and chop the squash and put this the onion and the garlic into a large roasting tin. Add all of the spices except for the coriander and add the olive oil and a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Mix thoroughly cover with tin foil and leave to marinate for at least 1 hour. Heat the oven to 200c / fan 180c and roast covered for approx 40 minutes uncovering the tin after 20 minutes stir the mixture at this point too. The squash is ready when it is tender and melts in your mouth.
In the prepared stock bring the quinoa and barley to a simmer and after 20 minutes drain off and season with salt.
Method for the Greens
In a heavy based frying pan heat on a medium heat and then toast the sunflower seeds for 2 minutes until starting to brown and set them to one side. Add the butter to the pan and when melted add the green beans and toss in the butter and cook for 3-5 minutes. Add the sesame oil to the same pan and then the watercress and rocket and wilt for 1-2 minutes. Add the sunflower seeds back to the pan and remove from the heat.
You are now ready to plate up. Using a metal ring add a layer of the quinoa and barley and top with the roasted spiced squash, place the green next to the tartlet and you have a truly memorable and tasty meal, which is entirely suitable for vegetarians too.