It's been an insanely warm 'winter' here in the Bay Area. Very little rain, days and days of 60 and 70 degree, sunshiny days, trees and flowers blooming in early February. This is weather we're not exactly thrilled about because it means no water for our gardens and reservoirs, and no snow in the mountains, but it's also just too darn beautiful to not get out and enjoy. I think of winter as a great time to get cozy in the kitchen, heating the house up... but I haven't done so much of that this winter. This tart is an exception.
The recipe piqued my interest because it called for one sheet of puff pastry, which I happened to have in the freezer, and eggs, which I grabbed from our lovely flock at work. I like making pizza, and this recipe seemed like a fresh take on that go-to meal. I don't use puff pastry often (the sheet I had in the freezer probably would have stayed their until next Thanksgiving or Christmas otherwise), but it has a great texture and crispness that's perfect for this tart. You can even find whole wheat puff pastry at Whole Foods.
Spinach Mushroom Egg Tart
1 Sheet puff pastry, thawed
flour for rolling
2 Tablespoons butter or olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 portabella mushrooms, cleaned & chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 or 4 handfuls baby spinach
salt & pepper
Italian parsley & fresh grated Parmesan for garnish (optional)
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Roll out dough to approximately 11" x 14". If you don't mind a more rustic look, don't bother making it a perfect rectangle or trimming edges. Place the dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
3. With a sharp knife, cut a 1/2 inch border around the inside of the rectangle. Using a fork, prick the inside of the border all over (see photo below). This will make the outside border crust rise more than the inside.
4. Put the dough in the fridge for 20 minutes to chill.
5. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Saute the onion in the butter or oil for about 10 minutes, until soft, caramel-y and translucent. Add the mushrooms and garlic, saute another 5 or 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the spinach, turn off the heat, stir to wilt the spinach.
6. Place the chilled puff pastry in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes. The edge crust will puff up. This will help ensure that the crust doesn't get soggy later when you add all the toppings.
7. Once the puff pastry dough has baked, spread the onion, mushroom, spinach mixture evening inside the border. Make 4 little wells in the topping for the eggs.
8. Carefully crack the eggs into the wells on the topping. Sprinkle eggs with a little salt and pepper.
10. Cut into 4 pieces, serve with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and Parmesan cheese.