Spectacular Filo Fish Tart

The fish pie
We joined Anja and Micha in their camper van the other night for a spectacular dinner. Not only is it spectacular enough to produce a meal for four in a camper van which has (by virtue) not a lot of space, but to make such spectacular food on top of it. Chapeau, mon ami, chapeau.

A&M live in their converted “Sparkassen-bus”, a bus that was used as a mobile bank and driven to little towns and villages where there was no bank. This practice was stopped several years ago and they bought one of these buses and have created a beautiful home for themselves. Should you be traveling in Europe and see them, stop by for a friendly chat with them. You won't regret it!

Click here to look at their camper van and her blog: www.reisenundspeisen.com

We met them last year on the banks of the Rio Formosa (see post …) and have become firm friends. We decided to meet up again this year, same time, same place, and the fun is continued all along the southern coast of Portugal. And, now you can say thanks to her for this SUPERB Fish Filo Tart, which is made in a frying man and not baked in the oven.

The fish pie

THE RECIPE
Serves 4

-Salt cod / Bacalhao: This dried fish is a staple in Portugal and many other countries and is a super addition to any kitchen. You can prepare it two ways: 1) just wash it under running water and then shred. I find that this can be very salty and prefer the second method. 2) soak the fish in cold water for 24 hours, changing the water several times.

-Fenugreek: This is a very tasty spice that can be quite hard to find. It has a distinct flavor, but can be left out without a problem.

The fish pie

2 tbsp oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
500g bacalhao / salt cod, soaked as above and shredded
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp tomato paste
200ml cream
Peri-peri / Tabasco to taste
Fenugreek, opt.
250g spinach
8 sheets filo
2 tbsp oil

METHOD:

1. Saute the onion and garlic in the oil. Add the fish and tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Add the cream and spices and simmer till thickened. This can take some time. DO NOT add salt! It is salty enough though the fish.
2. Add the spinach and cook till well combined, about 5 minutes.
3. Put the oil in a cold frying pan. Use as flat a pan as possible as this aids turning and removing the tart. Put 2 sheets of filo in the pan, ¼ of filling, then another sheet & more filling. Continue till all the filling is used up and top with 2 sheets of filo. Tuck in the sides as you go along to keep the filling closed in.
The fish pie
4. Switch on the pan and brown over a medium heat, about 4-5min. Don't put it up too high as it will burn. Put a plate on top and flip the pan over so that the tart is on the plate. Then slide it back into the pan. If it needs more oil, add more. Cook the other side as the first. (See NOTE below.)
5. Remove from pan and slice into 4. It is deelicious so enjoy!

NOTE: You can also lightly butter each filo sheet and put 4 sheets on the bottom, then the filling and then 4 more greased sheets. Then cook as above or put in a baking dish and bake 20-25min @ 180C. I have also heated the oil before cooking in the past, but it is more difficult to get the tart into the pan.

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