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Garlic & Sherry Pastry
This pastry lifts cooked flour paste away from being a mere container; it will earn you compliments whenever it is produced. It transforms tarts - say 'Leek and Bacon', or 'Trout and Spring Onion' (q.v.) - into gourmet dishes.
Whilst the recipe is infallible, very cold butter and the minimum of processing produce the lightest pastry.
For 8 individual tarts:
1 big or 2 small cloves of Garlic, peeled
175g/6oz Plain White Flour
60g/2.5oz very cold Butter, chopped into walnut-sized pieces
Salt and freshly ground Pepper
Juice of ½ Lemon, sieved
1 medium Egg
a little Dry Sherry (about a small Sherry glass)
Equipment: Food processor
1. Finely chop the garlic in the food processor.
2. Add the flour, plus a little salt and pepper and briefly mix.
3. Add the chopped butter and process for a few seconds, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
4. Add the egg and the lemon juice and process for a further 10 seconds.
5. Now – this is where you have to be careful – with the open Sherry bottle in one hand, switch on the processor and slowly drizzle in some Sherry. Stop as soon as the pastry forms a ball around the blade.
Can be prepared ahead up to this stage, and stored overnight in the fridge.
If you are planning ahead in this way, shape the dough into a large sausage roll, you can then cut medallions from it to form individual tarts. Alternatively, fill your tart tins and finish baking them as required, straight from the fridge.
Unlike most pastry, this dough can be rolled out straight away, but should then be rested in the fridge for at least ½ hour before baking.
Recipe taken from 'Foolproof Entertaining' by Simon Scrutton - available from www.gourmetherbs.co.uk