Simple spinach tart is a meal that I could eat everyday for the rest of my life and be happy about it! It’s darn tasty, and has all of the food groups represented. What’s not to love?
This recipe is a take on a traditional French bistro-style tart. They are served cold, often as a appetizer, or paired with a tossed salad to make it a meal. The flaky base is in perfect harmony with the savory, slightly salty filling. I make this simple spinach tart year ’round because it is a great, quick breakfast or snack. In the summer, I use freshly wilted spinach or Swiss chard, grown in pots on my porch.
For some reason, the deer haven’t discovered my stash of greens growing so close to the house. Now that I’ve publicly spilled my secret, they will no doubt find a new love of salad, and munch my rainbow shard down to nubs. But I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.
The point of my deer ramblings? I used frozen spinach because fresh spinach doesn’t like to grow on my front porch in the winter. Something about the freezing temperatures keeps it from thriving. However, if you live in a more tropical climate, go ahead and wilt 2 pounds (yes, pounds) of fresh spinach or chard in place of the frozen stuff.
What you need to make a simple spinach tart:
Spinach tart is really quite simple. You’ll need: a 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom, one-half recipe of No Excuses Pie Dough, (or your favorite pie crust,) frozen spinach, lemon zest, kosher salt & black pepper, a few eggs, and freshly grated Asiago cheese.
Line the tart pan with well greased parchment paper. Roll out the pie dough, transfer it to the tart pan, and trim the edges. For more detailed instructions of this process, click here. Pop the tart into the refrigerator while preparing the filling.
Heh, heh! Pop the tart. Pop Tart. I crack myself up.
Zest the lemon, and set it aside.
Crack the eggs into a medium sized bowl. Not only is it easier for me to do this one handed so that I can photograph the process, but cracking an egg with one hand is very impressive to the elementary-aged boys that are usually helping me in the kitchen.
Season the eggs with a pinch of kosher salt and a little black pepper, to taste. I say a to taste, because I like to adjust the salt & pepper based on how particularly salty the batch of cheese I am using is…let your taste buds be your guide! As a general rule, I always start with 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper.
Dump in the shredded Asiago cheese. Please grate your own. Thank you. Parmigiana Reggiano or Fontina cheeses are also lovely in this tart.
Add the very well drained and squeezed spinach with the zest. Stir the filling mixture until everything is well distributed.
Spoon the filling into the pastry lined tart pan, smoothing the top as you go.
Notice how thin the filling layer is…it has just enough egg to hold it all together. That’s the way it is supposed to be.
This simple spinach tart is very unlike a thick & fluffy quiche. And it is divine.
Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the filling is set, and golden brown. Allow the tart to cool completely in the tart pan set on a wire rack.
Once cool, remove the tart from the pan, and coax it onto a serving plate with a large spatula or cake lifter.
Serve the Spinach Tart at room temperature, either alone, with a few rashers of thick-cut pepper bacon, or a large salad.
Leftover spinach tart can be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and stored in the refrigerator for a few days.
Confession: I’ve often come in from a run and eaten a slice of Spinach Tart straight from the ‘fridge, and washed it down with Gatorade. I’m classy like that.