In these times when travel is impossible (thank you quarantine), cooking is a good break. It allows us, during a meal, to fly away. The closer the sunny days get, the more I want to return to Corsica. I miss the sound of the waves, and my morning strolls in the corsican macquis from where delicious fragances escape. The corsican macquis is rich in aromatic plants wich are used to flavor the local cuisine. While waiting to be able to fly to Corsica, cook one of its specialities is a foretaste. One of my favorite dishes is the “tourte aux herbes”. You will see that I actually have many favorite dishes. In fact, my favorite thing is to cook and eat tasty dishes, just like the “tourte aux herbes” (herbs pie).
Chard in corsican cuisine is what spinach is in italian cuisine. Italians cook spinach a lot. They make delicious ricotta and spinach ravioli or cannelloni. In Corsica we find the same dishes but with local products: ravioli or cannelloni with brocciu (cheese) and chard. Chard is a typical mediterranean vegetable wich grows from june to november. It is low in calories, yet very rich in nutrients and vitamins.
One of my favorite way to cook it, is the “tourte aux herbes”. The corsican cuisine is a rustic cuisine in wich we use the products of the soil. In this recipe, we cook the leaves of chard with all the herbs you can find in your garden. That’s why we call it “tourte aux herbes”. If you can’t find chard, you can replace it with spinach leaves. We also use “népita” in this recipe. Népita is an aromatic herb which grows mainly in Corsica. We use it for its mentholated flavour. You can replace it with mint. This brings a touch of freshness to the recipe.
Tourte aux herbes (herbs pie) recipeSeasons: summer, fall
- flour 500 g
- butter 240 g
- cold water 10 cl
- egg yolks 2
- salt 2 teaspoons
- chard 1 buch
- eggs 3
- onions 2
- garlic 1 clove
- sugar 1 tbsp
- aromatic herbs: basil, nepita (or mint), oregano, thyme, rosemary, marjoram…
- liquid cream 15 cl
- olive oil
- salt, pepper
- egg yolk 1
- Whisk the salt and flour together. Mix in butter cubes.
- Add water and egg yolk. Form 2 balls. Put in the fridge for 2 hours or in the freezer for 20 minutes.
Tourte aux herbes:
- Pre-heat your oven to 180°.
- Detach the chard leaves from the ribs (the ribs can be used to accompany a meat).
- Rinse the leaves in water. Add them to boiling salted water for 15 minutes.
- During this time, chop the aromatic herbs. Wisk eggs, liquid cream and herbs. Add salt and pepper.
- After 15 minutes, drain and press the chard leaves. Cut them into thin slices.
- Peel and chop the garlic clove and onion. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and add the onions. When they are translucent, add a pinch of sugar. Add your chard slices and the garlic . Fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Pour into the salad bowl with the egg mixture.
- Roll out the pie crust and line a pie tin. Pour the mixture. Spread the 2nd pie crust on top. Seal the edges. Beat an egg yolk with a little water and use it to glaze the pie.
- Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
- Serve the pie hot. It can be accompanies by a green salad, cherry tomatoes, ham and a glass of nice red wine.