Stinging Nettles have become one of the very welcome early “greens” of spring. Foragers and cooks alike look forward to the many ways they can be used. Making this tart seems the right thing to do and excellent it is!
Makes an 8″ or 9″ Tart
Pre-baked pie shell (see below)
I prefer to use a glass pie dish because it gives a crisper crust. However, you can also use a 9” fluted 1 ¼” deep tart pan with a removable bottom.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
10 -12 oz. wild nettles, trimmed, & blanched (see below) Make sure you wear rubber gloves when handling the nettles…they are called “stinging” for a reason. Fresh spinach can be substituted if fresh nettles are unavailable.
½ cup chopped onion
3 slices bacon, cut into ½” pieces
8 brown mushrooms, sliced
¾ cup grated cheese, Gruyere or cheddar cheese, grated
2 tsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped,
½ tsp. thyme chopped
½ tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper
Salt & pepper
For a 8” Glass Pie Plate use: 2 cups creamo and 4 eggs, beaten. For a 9” Metal, Fluted Tart Pan use:1 cup creamo and 3 eggs, beaten.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt. Blanch nettles for 1 minute or until just wilted. Remove from boiling water into a bowl of ice water. Drain, squeeze out all the moisture from the nettles, chop and put aside.
Place bacon in a cold frying pan, place on medium heat; sauté until crisp. Remove and drain on paper towels. In the same pan sauté the onions until softened then add the mushrooms and continue cooking until the mushrooms are slightly browned, being careful not to brown the onions. Remove from heat and cool.
Whisk together the eggs and creamo, add the fresh herbs, salt & pepper. Place half the grated cheese into pie shell along with the nettles and mushrooms, top with remaining cheese. Pour the custard over and place in preheated 375 F oven. Bake for 30 – 45 minutes, checking after 30 minutes by inserting a thin bladed knife into the middle of the tart. If it is done, the knife will come out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack for 20 minutes before cutting.