Turnip Tart with Curd Cheese and Caraway Pastry

The peppery flavour of turnips is at its best in this glossy caramelized upside-down tart. It can be served with a green salad or vegetable. The unusual pastry is very quick to make and full of taste.

Ingredients

  • 40 g/ oz butter
  • 1 tablespoon dear honey
  • 550 g/ lb small turnips
  • salt
  • black pepper

For the pastry

  • 75 g/3 oz curd cheese
  • 75 g/3 oz butter
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds
  • 175 g/6 oz plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 generous pinches cayenne pepper

Method

To make the pastry, put the curd cheese and butter into a food processor and whizz together briefly. Then add the caraway seeds, flour, baking powder, cayenne pepper and a sprinkling of salt. Whizz again briefly until the mixture sticks together to form a dough. Press the dough into a ball, wrap in cling film and refrigerate while you prepare the filling.

Smear the butter thickly over the base and up the sides of a 23 cm/9 in round flan tin. Then drizzle the honey over the butter and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Without topping and tailing or peeling them, slice the turnips very thinly lengthways and arrange a neat layer over the butter and honey. Continue layering with the remaining turnip slices, pressing them down evenly.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry to form a circle slightly bigger than the flan dish. Lay the pastry on top of the turnips and press the edges down inside the dish, making a thick rim. Pierce 2 small holes in the pastry to allow steam to escape.

Cook the tart on the centre shelf of the oven for 25-30 minutes, until the pastry has browned, then turn down the heat to 150°C/300°F/gas mark 2 and cook for another 30 minutes. Remove the tart from the oven and leave for about 5 minutes, then put a large, flat serving plate on top of the flan tin and turn them both upside down. Give a shake and turn the tart on to the serving plate, carefully lifting the tin off.

,