Smoked Haddock and Lovage Tart

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This recipe comes from Feasting on Herbs, an excellent book by my dear friend Sue Lawrence who is one of the best cooks I know. I cooked it untested for a dinner of Gaelic poets and it was much praised by the late great Sorley Maclean. As he was speaking Gaelic at the time I can’t tell you what he said. It is excellent, and I know you will love it.

Ingredients

For the Pastry

  • 150g/6oz plain flour
  • 55g/2oz polenta salt
  • 115g/4oz unsalted butter
  • 1 egg combined
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

For the Filling

  • 350g/12 oz undyed smoked haddock
  • 150ml/¼ pint milk
  • 150ml/¼ pint cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp lovage
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Method

To make your pastry in a food processor, mix all the dried ingredients, chop in the butter then add the egg and oil, spinning until a paste forms. Chill for 30 minutes. Roll out and line a 23cm/9in flan tin. The pastry will be very crumbly so patch it in by hand and chill in the tin for a further 30 minutes. Bake blind in a preheated oven 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 until the pastry is cooked and pale gold, 15–20 minutes. Cool slightly.

Poach fish in the milk, remove from milk and flake into pie crust reserving the milk. Whisk the cream and eggs into the milk and add the lovage, season and pour over the fish. Return to the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the filling is set. Cool slightly before serving. This is also good cold.