Friday Food: Asparagus and Gruyere tart

I am quite obsessive about cooking seasonally, particularly when entertaining. I hate eating stodgy winter food in summer, yet I lust after a crumble come Autumn. Of course, I’m also a fan of simple food and when we had friends over this week as a belated birthday dinner after work, the food needed to be easy. I chose this Asparagus and Gruyere tart as a starter that I have been meaning to make forever. You can find versions all over the internet but with 3 ingredients I don’t feel it really warrants a recipe.

  • Roll out a sheet of ready made pastry (there’s a time and a place for making your own pastry, this isn’t it.) Trim it to fit your baking tray. Use a knife to score a line about an inch away from the edge on all sides making it look like a frame and then score the interior too in a cross hatch pattern.
  • Bake according to the manufacturers instructions – usually about 20 minutes until risen and golden.

  • In the meantime grate your Gruyere, (I actually substituted for Emmental on this occasion, any sweet nutty swiss cheese will do.) When the pastry is done, squash the central area of pastry within your crust edge and fill the space with grated cheese.
  • Lay your asparagus on top of the cheese, packed in close to each other.
  • Return to the oven and bake for another 20 or so minutes until the asparagus is cooked and the cheese is golden.

One rectangle could serve 6 but we were greedy and shared it between 4. Enjoy! Love, Rebecca xo

Friday Food: Red Pepper, chilli and Chorizo Pasta

There’s nothing fancy about this week’s Friday Food but as so many of you mentioned quick easy midweek meals I thought I’d share something that we eat nearly every week in the Norris Household. I can’t take any credit for it… it’s Pete who makes it, and I virtually beg him to. It’s not a special dish, I just love the ingredients and the flavours and while I don’t profess to being any kind of whizz in the kitchen, maybe it will inspire you to create something similar. The dish also happens to be made from basic store cupboard ingredients that you’ll often find in your kitchen. I once read the intro to a Delia Smith book in which she said she ‘always had capers in her larder’ and an amorous fan wrote in to say she could come and caper in his larder anytime! Well, I always keep a chorizo in mine and this is often what it turns into…

Ingredients
Red and/or yellow peppers, sliced (I prefer the long sweet ones)
Half a Chorizo sliced
2 tins of chopped tomatoes
1 carton of pasata
A handful of sliced mushrooms
1 onion, sliced
1 red chilli, chopped and with or without the seeds, to taste.
1 stick of celery
2 garlic cloves
We also had some bacon lardons that needed using up that got thrown in, and if I ever make this dish, I add a couple of drained dessert spoons of capers, just because I like them!
A handful of basil leaves is also good, if you have them in, but it’s just as good if you don’t.

Method

  • Start off with the chorizo and on a medium heat brown it and release the fat with all the flavours.
  • Add in the peppers, onions, celery, chilli and later the mushrooms. Sweat them down on a lower heat with the pan lid on, stirring occasionally, allowing them to sweeten and soften.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and pasata and allow to thicken slightly whilst you are cooking the pasta.
  • Serve the sauce with the pasta mixed through it, piled high in warmed pasta dishes and with a few shavings of fresh parmesan on top.

What are you making this weekend readers?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

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