Stinging Nettle & Leek Tart

Prep time: 1hr 40 mins

Cook time: 35 mins

Serves: 8

*Will need a 24cm loose bottom tart tin

Ingredients

110g butter, diced and at room temperature

200g of white flour

Pinch of salt

2-3 tbsp chilled water

1 tbsp butter, for frying

1 leek, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 ½ cups of blanched nettle leaves, chopped - approximately 5 large handfuls of foraged nettle

1 ½ tsp of freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of salt

5 eggs

100 ml of pouring cream

Method

For the shortcrust pastry, place flour, salt and butter in a large bowl. Using your fingertips rub butter into the flour until the mixture starts to resemble fine breadcrumbs - there should be no large lumps of butter remaining.

Slowly add the water a little at a time, use a butter knife to mix until a dough is formed. Very quickly, lightly knead the dough to form a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes before use.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees and grease a 24cm loose bottom tart tin with butter. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the pastry into a large circle big enough to cover tart tin, lightly press pastry into tin and trim edges, leaving a 2cm border of pastry around edges.

Line your pastry base with baking paper and add bakers weights - alternatively dried beans or uncooked rice work just as well - this will prevent the dough from rising whilst baking. Blind bake in oven for 25-30 minutes until base is a light golden brown. 

Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, using gloves add stinging nettle to water and blanch for 2 minutes, this will disarm its nasty stingers. Place nettle in a colander, rinse with cold water and squeeze lightly to remove excess water. Roughly chop - discard any of the tough thicker stems - measure 1 ½ cups and put aside.

Add butter, garlic and leek to a frying pan and cook until leek is translucent and light brown in colour, remove from pan and place in bowl, stir in chopped stinging nettle and grated nutmeg and a good pinch of salt.

In a separate bowl whisk together eggs and cream then stir into the nettle mixture. Pour your mixture into the pastry base and bake in oven for 25-30 minutes, until egg is just cooked through.

Leave to cool on a rack for 20 minutes then serve with fresh goats curd and torn parsley!