A seasonal dish made all year round
Kim calls this ‘contents of the garden’ to indicate that you should use whatever is in season. This recipe is a spring pie, so she’s used peas, asparagus, the broccolini-like shoots of numerous vegetables that have bolted, and a little green garlic.
In autumn she’d use pumpkin and it would be delicious in winter with Jerusalem artichokes. In summer stuff this full of roast stone fruit or rhubarb and custard. Channel your inner gardener and don’t get too hooked up on the recipe – it’s a guide only.
- 200grams plain flour
- 100grams chilled butter
- 50 grams grated parmesan cheese
- Pinch of salt
- Cold water to bind (approx. 50ml)
- 50 mls olive oil
- 1 large Onion
- Several cloves of garlic
- A few sprigs of thyme (and any other herbs you wish)
- Chilli to taste
- A bunch of spinach (any varieties)
- A handful of fresh fennel fronds
- Rind & juice of a lemon
- 3 eggs
- 150ml cream
- 150 grams fetta cheese (or ricotta)
- A handful of pine-nuts or sesame seeds (optional)
- In a food processor combine the butter, flour and cheese. Bring to a ball with the water.
- Flatten into a round, wrap and chill for about an hour.
- Saute the onion, garlic and thyme gently for a few minutes in the oil.
- Add the chopped chilli, roughly chopped spinach, and cook for a couple of minutes, just enough to wilt it.
- Toss in the chopped fennel, lemon rind and juice, season with salt and pepper. Let cool.
- Gently mix the cream and egg and add this to the spinach mix, leaving just a little to egg-wash the pastry at the end.
- Heat your oven to 180 degrees celcius.
- On a lightly floured surface roll the pastry out into a circle (it doesn’t have to be perfect) about 2mm thick.
- Place the pastry on a baking tray (greased or lined with baking paper), allowing it to overlap the tray as you will fold the edges up in the next step.
- Add the spinach filling to the centre of the pastry, covering about ¾ of the surface.
- Top this with crumbled feta cheese and the nuts or seeds if using.
- Now use your hands under the edge of the pastry overlap to lift it up and over the filling, leaving the middle open and exposed. Let the edges fold as they fall, don’t be too fussy, this gives the crostata it’s distinctive rustic look.
- Use the little egg and cream mix leftover to brush the overlapped edges of the pastry.
- Place in the oven until golden brown, about 30 minutes.
- Serve warm or cold with crunchy sourdough, lots of good butter and a green salad.