Cooking time: About 20 minutes
Resting time for the pastry: 1 hour
A Niçois variation of the herb tart, this “tourte” puts a new spin on Swiss chard, serving it on puff pastry, with apples, figs and pine nuts, flavoring it with lemon and parmesan and sweetening it with brown sugar.
The recipe dates far back to the Middle Ages and was described in the “Le Menagier de Paris” in 1393.
Making the pastry
- Arrange the flour in a pyramid on a work surface;
- make a well in the center; add the beaten eggs, butter, sugar and salt;
- work together with your fingers until smooth, adding water as necessary – work the pastry as little as possible so that it doesn’t become tough;
- let rest 1 hour.
Making the filling
- soak the raisins and currants in the eau de vie for at least an hour;
- wash and clean the Swiss chard leaves; blot them dry with paper towel or dry in a salad spinner;
- roll the leaves up to cut them more easily, then slice them into thin strips;
- combine the brown sugar, parmesan, pine nuts, raisins, olive oil, lemon juice, beaten eggs and Swiss chard in a large bowl;
- wash and peel the apples, remove the core and seeds; cut into thin wedges;
- chop the figs coarsely.
- divide the pastry in half; with a rolling pin, roll into two circles, keeping the pastry thin;
- line a 40 cm (16”) tart pan with the first circle of dough;
- place the filling on top and arrange the figs and apple wedges in a wreath;
- cover with the second circle of pastry;
- pinch the edges to seal tightly all the way around;
- place in a preheated 200° C (400° F) oven;
- when the crust is browned, check the filling for doneness by inserting a thin knife blade; if the knife comes out clean, it’s done; otherwise reduce the oven temperature to 180° C (350° F) and continue cooking for a few more minutes;
- remove from the oven, sprinkle with brown sugar or icing sugar and serve warm.
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