Cardamom, Fennel and Brie Tart

While the weather may be miserable now, in typically unpredictable fashion we’re apparently in for a scorcher this weekend – so what better time to try a new summer recipe? These fennel, brie and cardamom tarts are perfect as part of a fancy lunch, or make a great snack on their own. 


For the dough:

225g strong white flour
½ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
2 tbsp milk or water
75ml Mr Hugh’s cold pressed rapeseed oil

For the Tarts:

3 medium bulbs fennel
8 cardamom pods, crushed and seeds removed
30g butter
2 tbsp Mr Hugh’s rapeseed oil
2 tbsp white wine
2 large free range eggs
2 free range egg yolks
100ml full fat crème fraiche
300ml double cream
2 tbsp chives (optional)
120g brie
Sea salt and black pepper
Equipment 22cm /9 inch, loose bottomed tart tin or 4 10cm 4 inch individual tart tins


The tarts

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 5. Sieve the flour, salt, and baking powder in to a bowl. Mix the oil and milk together and mix gently with a fork until it all holds together. Divide the pastry into 4 equal pieces and form each piece into a ball.

2. Roll each piece of pastry out between two pieces of cling film making the pieces as thin as possible.

3. Line each tart tin with the pastry and trim the edges and prick the bases with a fork. Line the cases with baking parchment and baking beans.

The filling

1. Bake the pastry cases for 6 minutes and remove from the oven.

2. Remove the tough outer leaves of the fennel, cut in half and slice.  Fry the fennel with the cardamom seeds in the butter and rapeseed oil, ensure the fennel does not brown too much.  After about 4 minutes add 2 tbsp water, 2tbsp of white wine season with sea salt and black pepper and cook until the liquid has evaporated and a little syrupy.

3. Whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, crème fraiche and cream.  Stir in the chives if using and season well with sea salt and black pepper.  Place the cooked fennel in the base of the tart tin and pour over the egg and cream mixture.  Cut the Brie into slices and place on top of the tart.

4. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until just set and lightly browned. Eat warm with salad leaves drizzled with rapeseed oil.


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