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Fennel, Onion & Mushrooms Tarts


Ingredient list

225 g. / 8 oz. savoury, or puff pastry
175 g. /6 oz. mushrooms, ideally mixed, such as brown caps, shiitake, oysters
1 red onion
1 bulb fennel
6 cloves garlic
light olive oil


100 ml. / 3 ½ fl. oz. whipping cream
100 g.  / 4 oz. unsalted butter, chilled and diced
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. snipped fresh chives
1 Tbsp. chopped parsley


Grease 4 × 10 cm. ( 4 in. ) tartlette tins.  Roll out the pastry to about 3 mm. ( 1/8 in. ) thick, and use to line the prepared tartlette tins.  Chill for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 180oC / 375oF.

Cover the pastry with greaseproof paper, fill with baking beans, and bake for 10 – 15 minutes, until cooked and light brown. Remove from oven.  Remove the paper and the beans and set aside.

Turn the oven up to 220oC./ 425oF.

Prepare the mushrooms, cleaning, cutting and trimming them as necessary.  Peel the red onion, being careful to leave the root intact.  Cut the onion into 8 wedges along the axis of the root.  Trim the tops off the fennel, cut into quarters, and cut out the root.  Slice into 1 cm. / ¼ in. slices.

Blanch the fennel in boiling salted water for two minutes, and drain.

Crush the garlic cloves lightly in their skins with the flat of a knife. 

 Place all the vegetable and the garlic on a baking sheet, and drizzle with the light olive oil, and toss gently.  Season with salt and pepper.  Bake in the hot oven for 10 minutes, or until they are cooking and lightly browned.

To make the sauce, bring the cream to the boil in a small pan.  Whisk in the butter, and add the lemon juice, herbs, and salt and pepper to taste.  Take two garlic cloves from the vegetables, tease out the roast garlic from the skins, and mash it with the point of a knife.  Add this rough mash to the sauce.

To serve, fill each pre–baked tartlette shell with the vegetable mixture.  Heat the tarts for a minute or two in the oven, and then present on warmed plates, surrounded with a little sauce.


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