Saturday, February 25, 2012

Blue Cheese and Red Potatoes Tart

Potatoes and blue cheese should be a match made in heaven.  In fact, I'm pretty sure they are.  I have proven that with this tart.  It was a very short and subjective study, but as long as it's published on the internet it's true, right?

I'm a fan of Deb at the Smitten Kitchen food blog.  She has a fairly simple and approachable attitude toward food that I can get behind.  I've been drawn to several of her recipes in the past, but I was mesmerized by the Blue Cheese and Red Potato Tart recipe on her site.  I was actually mesmerized a while ago (back in 2010) but I re-discovered this recipe while rifling through my bookmarks for a quick tart to whip up for brunch last weekend.  (Let's face it.  There just aren't enough days and events in my life to make all the food I want to make!)

This is a rustic, simple tart and I'm so so so glad I choose this recipe to make.  The potato, blue cheese, and rosemary combination was something I've discovered I can't get enough of.  This tart was scrumptious and it's a fact that everyone needs this in their life.

Blue Cheese and Red Potatoes Tart
very slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen

  • 1 9" pie crust (I used a refrigerated pie crust, but you can make your own if you wish)
  • 1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped rosemary (or another herb of your choice, such as thyme)
  • Salt
  • 3/4 - 1 cup crumbled blue cheese

1) Preheat oven to 350°F.

2) Place the sliced potatoes in a medium saucepan with simmering water.  Make sure there is enough water to completely cover the potato slices.

3) Simmer, uncovered, until the potatoes are tender, ~10 minutes. Drain the water from the potatoes.  If necessary, pat the potatoes dry with paper towels to make sure they're not too wet.

4) Place the pie crust in a 9.5" pie pan.  You can also use a tart pan for this, but I don't have one so I improvised.

5) Arrange the potato slices in a circle around the pan.  Make it pretty y'all!

6) Scatter the crumbled blue cheese on top of the potatoes.

7) In a small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, egg yolk, rosemary, and a generous pinch of salt.

8) Pour the mixture over the potatoes and blue cheese.

9) Sprinkle a fine layer of salt over the tart.

10) Place the tart in the oven for 35-40 minutes.  Your tart may need more time in the oven if your potatoes aren't as tender as you would like them.  It's up to you, but make sure not to burn the cheese!

11) Cool in pan until it is room temperature.  Serve warm or cold.

Deb provided a really helpful tip for this tart.  In a nutshell, her tip is that "this is not a quiche".  She goes on to describe other aspects of the tart, but essentially you should realize that the potatoes and cheese will not be set in an egg mixture (as they would be if you were making a quiche).  While warm, the cream will be a little runny and the potatoes and blue cheese will move around pretty easily.

I realized this first-hand after the tart was done.  In my case, I sliced the tart while it was still warm and some of the cream oozed out into the vacated space in the pie pan.  What did I learn?  It's probably best to let the tart come to room temperature before trying to cut into it.  This will give the cream mixture time to "set up" so it doesn't spill everywhere when you start doling out slices.  Just so you know, this finding did not diminish the robust flavor of the tart itself.  I sort of wish I had another brunch event coming up so I could make this again...

Side note: I would love to try this tart with blue potatoes.  I'm already drooling at the prospect of taking pictures of that tart!

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