Celtic Pork Tart is another incredibly easy dish to prepare, but tastes like you worked all day on it! I like to make my own tart dough, and have included the recipe I use. But if you are pressed for time, a store-bought 9″ pie crust works just fine. Basically you just mix all the ingredients together, spoon it into your baking dish and 45 minutes later you have a fantastic dinner. Although the recipe indicates that either dates or apples are fine, I must say that I have tried both and think that dates give it that extra sweetness that makes it unique. When you think of a meat pie, generally sweet is not what you are expecting. But let me tell you the sweet and savory combination works! And its great straight out of the oven as well as straight out of the fridge. If you want to try something different than the ole Corned Beef and Cabbage for your St. Patrick’s Day feast, give this dish a try!
For the Tart Dough:
1 large egg yolk
2 Tablespoons ice water, plus more if needed
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 Cups (6 1/2 oz./200g) all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 Cup (4 oz/125g) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 ” cubes
For the Pork Filling:
1 1/2 pounds ground pork
1/2 cup chopped dates (or apples as you prefer)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
4 eggs, beaten
Pinch of salt and black pepper
1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cardamom
Zest of 1 lemon
Pre heat oven to 375° F
In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolk, 2 Tablespoons water, and vanilla.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, and salt and pulse to blend.
Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with butter pieces no larger than small peas.
Add the egg mixture and pulse just until the dough pulls together. If the dough is dry, mix in more water 1 Tablespoon at a time.
Transfer the dough to a work surface, pat into a ball and flatten into a disk. The dough can be used right away or wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated until well chilled, about 30 minutes.
Lightly flour the work surface, then flatten the disk and roll out to 1/8 inch thickness 2-3 inches larger than your pan.
Fit dough to your 9 1/2 ” tart pan.
Mix together pork, dates, parmesan, eggs, seasonings and lemon zest.
Spoon mixture into uncooked 9″ pie shell or into 9 1/2″ tart pan.
Bake for 45 minutes or until meat thermometer reads 155° F
The tart may be served either hot or cold.
Tart Dough Recipe from The Williams-Sonoma Baking Book
Celtic Pork Tart Recipe from Celtic Folklore Cooking by Joanne Asala