I love it whenever my husband takes the time to cook me dinner, but I have to say that this time he out did himself! If surprising me with delectable autumnal spread is what he was after, then his mission was definitely accomplished! It started off with a fresh, seasonal salad with dried cranberries, the next "course" was a beautiful curried butternut squash soup, then came the perfectly baked savory tart. This tart was no ordinary entrée. It was made with a homemade, buttery crust filled with a melody of leeks, potatoes, baby portabello mushrooms, and Gruyère cheese in a seasoned blend of eggs and goodness--Awe! I am serious whenever I say this was a mouthwatering meal! Oh, and I can't forget about the harvest apple crisp. Every time I thought the next surprise couldn't get better, it did!
I have to share with you the recipe for the tart, because it's such a great dish if you're wanting to try something different, or it would be perfect as a breakfast or brunch item, too! The crust was easy to make (so he says) and so worth the extra time. It's just right as a flaky, buttery bed for the filling. Leeks are a great vegetable that I discovered last year. They are in the onion family, but much more mild than a regular onion. The way you clean them is soaking them in water and letting all of the sand they hold fall to the bottom of the bowl. Then slice the leeks and soak them again in clean water to make sure they are very clean and ready to eat. (See in pictures.) Leaks and potatoes are a great marrying of flavors, and that's one reason why I love this dish so much!
This is a beautiful recipe and I'm so thankful for my wonderful husband to take the time to treat me to his cooking. It was truly better than any restaurant--a perfectly cozy date night at home! I love that man!!!
Leek, Potato, and Baby Portabello Tart with Gruyere
- For the crust:
- 1 cup flour, plus more for rolling out dough
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 7 tablespoons butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
- For the filling:
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup thinly sliced leek (about 1 large)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 medium peeled baking potato, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (~1 cup), boiled
- 1/4 pound baby portabello mushrooms (or any fresh mushroom), cut into about 1-in. pieces
- 1 cup fat-free milk
- 1/2 cup egg substitute
- 1/3 cup (1 1/2 ounces) grated Gruyère or Swiss cheese
- 2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- To make the crust: In a medium bowl, mix flour, salt, and pepper. Rub butter into flour until most of it looks like cornmeal but some larger, pea-size pieces remain. Drizzle in 3 tbsp. ice-cold water while stirring quickly with a fork. Or, pulse flour, salt, pepper, and butter in a food processor or blender until a coarse, cornmeal-textured mixture forms, then drizzle in ice water until dough comes together. Turn dough onto a large piece of plastic wrap and use wrap to press dough into a 1-in.-thick disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days.
Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly flour a work surface. Unwrap dough; with a rolling pin gently roll it, turning dough 90° between each roll, into a 12-in. circle.
Place rolled-out dough in a 9 1/2-in. tart pan. Trim edges flush with pan edges. Cover dough with a large piece of aluminum foil and weigh down with pie weights, dried beans, or uncooked rice.
Bake crust 20 minutes. Lift foil and weights off crust and bake until beginning to turn golden, about 10 minutes. Let crust cool to room temperature.
Meanwhile, make filling: Melt butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add leeks and salt and cook, stirring, until leeks are soft, about 3 minutes. Turn heat to high and add mushrooms and potato. Cook, stirring constantly, until mushrooms have given off their liquid, 5 to 10 minutes. Spread leek mixture into prepared crust.
Place the milk, eggs, cheeses, thyme and mustard in a blender, and process until smooth. Pour milk mixture over leek mixture. Bake at 375° for 40 minutes; let stand for 10 minutes.