Saturday, June 13, 2009

Pea Shoots and Pepper Tarts

A two crust pie recipe serves as the base. I blind baked mine for about twenty minutes at 400 degrees F. and then another ten minutes at 450 once the toppings went on.

I had about 1/4 pound of pea shoots/leaves, a handful of fresh sage, another handful of watercress, and half a red pepper. I grated 1 cup of Pepato cheese and tossed that in as well. Really, just cook the greens for a couple minutes in a bit of oil until they wilt-that happens rather quickly. Same for the peppers.

My pie crust recipe:

1/4 cup cold unsalted butter cut in small pieces
1 cup solid vegetable shortening
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/3 cup very cold water
1 tablespoon vinegar

Combine the flour and salt in a bowl. Cut in the shortening and butter. Mix the water, egg and vinegar together-but add it slowly to the flour mixture-you may not need it all.

When dough comes together, handle very lightly. Let stand a few minutes before rolling out. This will make enough dough for two tarts.

Roll out the dough and transfer to an ungreased baking sheet. Prick all over with a fork and blind bake. Proceed as above.


Lisa said...

Glad to see so many cool new things up on your blog! What are pea shoots anyways I am about as amateur about cooking as they get even though 1/2 my life is over.

My mother in law makes a similar tart but it has the pie crust on top too & loaded with green beans, spinach, onions, parmesean & like yours...mmmm good!

Goody said...

I used to make fun of people that called for pea tendrils in recipes-until I tasted them. They are still kind of a specialty item in stores.

When you grow peas, the shoots are the green leaves, stems and tendrils of the plant. I grow them as a cutting lettuce, rather than letting them mature into peas. I can buy frozen peas for 77 cents a bag, but pea shoots cost 12 dollars a pound. So I grow them. They are excellent fresh in salads, or on sandwiches, but stand up to cooking as well (like spinach). They really do taste like peas, which is kind of neat.

They grow really well in cool weather and only need a small space. People grow them successfully in window boxes indoors as well, though I haven't tried it. They do grow fast-I can take cuttings and a few days later they've grown back. Eventually they get too stalky, but they can be re-planted again in the cooler fall weather. We've had an unusually cool spring here, so my yield has been fantastic.

Lisa said...

Now I understand why you rave about them and cook a host of recipes with peat shoots. Thanks. My world has opened up since discovering your blog! Thanks!