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A medieval Tart of Brie

The tart described here is richer and more interesting than many other cheese tarts and makes an easy and delicious centrepiece for all types of salad and green vegetable accompaniments.

ingredients

serves 4-6
175 g (6 oz) plain shortcrust pastry
115 g (4 oz) Brie (weighed without rind)
425 ml (3/4 pint) double cream
1 teaspoon saffron strands
1/2 teaspoon ground mace or nutmeg
1 teaspoon light soft brown sugar
salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 eggs, plus 2 egg yolks

method

1. Line a shallow 23cm (9 in) tart tin with the pastry and pre-bake or bake blind. Pre-heat the oven to 220°C (425°F) Gas 7.

2. Chop the cheese into small chunks and place in a small oven-proof bowl and cover with half the cream.

3. Put the Brie and cream into the oven for 10 minutes to melt. Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F) Gas 4.

4. Meanwhile, warm the remaining cream in a pan, remove from the heat, add the saffron and leave to infuse for a few minutes.
Place the melted Brie and cream in a food processor and blend until well mixed. Pour into a bowl and add the saffron, cream, mace or nutmeg, sugar and salt and pepper.

5. In a separate large bowl, lightly beat the eggs and egg yolks, add the cream/cheese mixture and mix well, making sure the eggs and cream are well blended. Pour into the pre-baked pastry case and bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until the filling is set and has .risen up in a puffy golden splendour.

6. Serve warm or cold with a mixed green or tomato salad.

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