Serves: 4 - Time:
A really rather delicious tart of autumn colours and flavours. If you can’t find Epoisses cheese you could try a Reblochon or Stinking Bishop which, by the way, must surely win Best Named Cheese. I’m always banging on about using all-butter puff pastry but, while it is more difficult to find, it is far and away a better product than standard puff pastry. I buy it in quantity and freeze the sheets so there is always some to have to hand. If you want to make the tart vegetarian leave out the pancetta. You could always add some sliced chestnut mushrooms to the butternut squash at the same time as you would have added the pancetta.
- 1 small butternut squash, about 700g, peeled, halved and deseeded
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 75g cubed pancetta
- 100g swiss chard or spinach, washed
- 320g sheet all-butter puff pastry
- Half an Epoisses cheese, cut into six wedges
- 45g pecan nuts, roughly chopped
- 1 egg yolk, beaten
- Heat the oven to fan 190°c, mark 6. Cut the butternut flesh into 1cm squares and place in a roasting tin. Toss with the extra-virgin olive oil and season with salt and ground black pepper. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes. Stir the cubes and add the pancetta. Return to the oven and cook for a further 15-20 minutes until the squash cubes are soft and golden.
- While the butternut squash is in the oven, steam the chard over boiling water for 6-8 minutes (if you are using spinach it will only need 2-3 minutes). Pat the chard –or spinach- dry with kitchen paper and roughly chop. Add to the butternut squash and pancetta when it comes out of the oven. Leave to cool for a few minutes.
- Unroll the pastry and lay it on a baking tray. Arrange the vegetables over the pastry, leaving a 2-3cm margin around the edges. Place the cheese wedges over the vegetables and scatter with pecans. Fold the edges of the pastry up over the edge of the vegetables. Brush the pastry with the egg yolk. Bake the tart in the oven for about 25 minutes until the pastry is golden brown.