Preparation time: 15-20 minutes
Cooking time: 80 minutes
You will need a 25cm loose bottom tart case.
This light and delicious tart is perfect for a summer meal outdoors, served with a chilled bottle of white wine.
- 1 packet shortcrust pastry
- 1 egg, beaten for brushing the case
- 2 bundles of asparagus
- 50g butter
- 1 small onion very finely chopped
- 1 ½ tsp tomato puree
- 1 generous tsp Dijon mustard
- 300g soft fresh brown crab meat
- 300ml single cream
- A grind of black pepper & salt to taste
- 2 medium eggs
1Pre-heat the oven to 190°c.
2Take a 25cm round loose bottom tart case and roll out the short crust pastry nice and thin to fit. Tuck neatly into the case whilst leaving the sides hanging down all the way around. Scrunch up some baking paper and then flatten out and line the inside of the pastry case, then fill with baking beans so that the pastry is weighted down.
3Put the case on a baking tray and cook in the oven for approximately half an hour until the visible overhanging pastry appears to be turning a rich golden colour.
4Remove from the oven, take out the paper and beans and put the tart back in for a further 5-6 minutes, in order to crisp up the bottom.
5Remove from the oven and whilst still hot paint the entire of the case with a beaten egg.
6Taking a small paring knife shave around the rim of the case detaching the overhang.
7Cut the asparagus spears in half. Bring some salted water to the boil, drop in the asparagus and cook for no more than 1 ½ minutes, drain, cool in cold water, drain again and thoroughly dry in a tea towel.
8Melt the butter in a saucepan and sauté the onions slowly, this should take 10 minutes or so until they are soft and pale gold. Stir in the tomato puree and mustard and cook gently for a minute or so more. Add the brown crab meat, followed by the cream, salt and pepper, stir it all together. Take off the heat and beating the entire time break in the 2 remaining eggs, beating in well to combine. Leave to one side.
9Scatter the asparagus into the pastry case, pour the crab filling over the top, gently return the tart to the oven and cook for approximately 25-30 minutes. When the tart is nearly done, give the tray a little shake, the filling should wobble slightly in the middle. It is important to take the tart out at this time as it will go on cooking once it is removed from the oven, and you want the filling soft rather than overset.
10Either eat warm or at room temperature.