Sweet potato tart with bacon and leeks

In my mind there is nothing better than pastry… butter, white flour… probably one of the world’s best combinations. Fill that pastry with bacon, leeks etc and what more could you ask for?? The downside.. pastry is not particularly good for you so unless its a special occasion, I try to avoid it. HOWEVER, you can still enjoy a good tart without the pastry by using sweet potato slices to create the crust…

Serves-6

Cost per person– £0.91

Ingredients

2 large sweet potatoes

1 pack of bacon lardons

2 large leeks

4 eggs

Handful frozen spinach

Pinch salt and pepper

Knob of butter

Splash of milk

Pinch of fresh thyme

3 Garlic cloves

Method

The first step to this recipe is to prepare the potatoes. Cut your sweet potatoes into 5mm-1cm thick slices; if you have fairly good knife skills then do this by hand, otherwise use a mandolin. Once sliced, spread out the potatoes on a baking tray, season with salt, pepper and fresh thyme, and finally crush a few garlic cloves (no need to peel) and add. Don’t over crowd the potatoes,  you want them to be fairly well spread out to cook properly, not sticking together or turning into a potato mush! Put the potatoes into a pre-heated oven at 190 degrees and cook for 30 mins, but turning after 15.

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Whilst the potatoes are in the oven you need to prep your other ingredients. Take a handful of frozen spinach from the freezer and place in a bowl to defrost and then finely slice your leeks.

Add your bacon lardons to a dry, non-stick frying pan and cook for 3-4 mins. When the lardons are starting to go golden and crispy, add in a knob of butter and your leeks and cook for a further 5 mins, until the leeks are completely cool. Once cooked leave on the side to cool.

Once the spinach has defrosted, squeeze it to drain the excess liquid then chop and add to a bowl (I had some fresh stuff at the time too, so that got chucked in as well). Add to this the cooled bacon/ leek mix, the eggs, a splash of milk and season with salt a pepper and give it a good mix. Your potatoes should be cooked by this stage so take them out the oven and let them cool too.

Now it is simply about assembling. I used a non stick loose based cake tin for this because it allowed me to lift the tart out easily once it was cooked, but lets be honest, I have to try and take a reasonably attractive photo of it afterward. Given you don’t have this pressure, use whatever oven proof dish you have available, as long as you can get a spatula into it to lift a slice out without it falling to bits..alternatively, it will still taste good in a messy pile on your plate 🙂

Pre-heat your oven to 190 degrees. Layer your potatoes ensuring they totally cover the bottom and sides of your dish, preventing any of your liquid coming out of the bottom when you pour it in. Add your egg/leek/ bacon mixture and cook for 30 mins, until the egg is completely cooked. You can test this by putting a knife through the middle and it coming out clean. Serve with whatever you fancy, I went for a simple green salad. Enjoy!

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