This was originally a recipe that my mum had in her kitchen. I have tweaked it a little over the years but always marvel at how the natural sweetness of roast pumpkin contrasts so well with the salty kick from the bacon. I always look for quite fatty bacon which means you get enough rendered fat to sauté the onions. If you have leaner bacon you may need to add a little olive oil to the fry pan in order to get this task done.
This is on of my most favourite things to cook and eat. Enjoy!
250 g plain flour
1 tsp salt
150 g butter, cut into 1 cm cubes
65 ml chilled water
1 tsp vinegar
300 g Jap Pumpkin, skin on and chopped into medium sized chunks
Drizzle of olive oil
3 rashers bacon, chopped
1/2 brown onion, finely diced
300 ml pouring cream
100 g mature cheddar cheese, grated
Leaves from one sprig of rosemary, finely chopped
Salt & Pepper
1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 C and line a small baking tray with foil. Pile the pumpkin into the tray, drizzle over the olive oil and season with a little salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for about 40 minutes or until well golden and soft. Scrape the flesh from the skin (discard the skin) and then mash the pumpkin with a fork in a small bowl and set aside.
2. Lower the oven temperature to 180 C.
3. While the pumpkin is roasting make the pastry. Place the flour and salt in a bowl. Rub the butter into flour mix and then tip the mixture onto your workbench. Sprinkle over the water and vinegar.
4. Using the palms of your hands bring the mix together by smearing the mixture together. Form the pastry into a disc, wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 180 C.
5. Roll out the pastry and line a 24 cm tart tin. Blind bake the pastry for 15 minutes. Remove the paper and weights and continue baking for another 15 minutes, or until the pastry has become golden brown.
6. In a small fry pan fry the bacon over a medium-high heat to cook it and also render out the fat. Lower the temperature, add the onion and sauté until the onion has softened but not yet coloured.
7. In a medium jug or bowl beat the eggs and cream together and then stir through the pumpkin mixture and rosemary leaves. Season with a little salt and a good pinch of pepper.
8. Sprinkle the bacon mixture and cheese over the base of the pastry case and then slowly pour in the pumpkin custard mixture.
9. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.