After last weekend’s food sourcing fiasco, we made sure to get to the market early on Saturday, especially since we knew we’d be saying farewell to Wishing Stone Farm for the season. Their absence is going to make eating as local as we’d like a bit more challenging. Now, I know there are many other great farms represented at the market, and we look forward to trying out what they have to offer, but from what I’ve seen (and this is by no means a criticism), no one else has the sheer variety of produce available that we’ve seen from Wishing Stone. Frankly, we’ve been spoiled by it, and I suspect I’m going to have to work a little harder to plan creative meals over the next few months.
One thing I’ll definitely miss is these beautiful oyster mushrooms. They didn’t have any at the last few markets, but when I spotted them in a basket on Saturday, I knew I’d have to pick some up to use early this week. I’ve had the idea in my head for a while now to make a Lucques-inspired savory tart, and I thought these mushrooms, simply roasted as I’ve prepared them in the past, would be a perfect topper.
The base of the tart couldn’t have been easier – you just take a sheet of the best quality all-butter puff pastry you can find (we like DuFour), press the thawed pastry out on a parchment-lined baking sheet, score a border around the edges and give the edges a little egg wash, then set it in the freezer until you’re ready to bake it. For the creamy cheese component, I drained off some of the liquid from a cup of Narragansett Creamery ricotta, and combined the drained curds with an egg yolk, a sprinkle of kosher salt, and a few grindings of pepper. I stirred them until combined, then whisked the mixture until smooth.
I only roasted the mushrooms for half the time I usually do, since I wanted them to finish cooking on top of the tart, so I took them out of the oven after about 10 minutes, gave them a gentle toss, and set them aside. I pulled my tart base out of the freezer and spread the ricotta mixture on top, then sprinkled on some crumbled Great Hill Blue and scattered some thinly sliced shallots all around.
I placed the tart into the oven (which was already set at 400, and preheated from roasting the mushrooms), and let it bake for about 15 minutes. At that point I pulled it out, scattered the mushrooms on top, returned it to the oven (rotating the pan from its previous position), and let it go for another 25 minutes or so, until the cheese was dense and creamy, the mushrooms crisp at the edges, and the crust golden brown.
I transferred the tart, still on it’s parchment liner, to a cutting board and scattered a mix of fresh chopped herbs – parsley, savory and lemon thyme – over the top, then cut it into slices. To serve, I added a side of Simmons Farm winter mesclun, simply dressed with a lemon vinaigrette. I can’t think of a better way to have said goodbye to those fabulous mushrooms for the season.
(Big thanks to Skip and crew for feeding us so well these past several months – we look forward to seeing you again in June!)