Looking for something simple, yet elegant to serve at your next Sunday brunch? Why not try these breakfast tarts? They’re so easy to make and very versatile, too. The tart shells may be blind baked the night before and covered loosely with a tea towel or parchment paper and kept at room temperature. Then, in the morning, just fill the shells and bake. I have served these tarts with various fillings (prosciutto, sautéed mushrooms, bacon), herbs (chives, thyme, oregano), and cheeses (parmesan, Gruyère, fontina), and get rave reviews from friends and family every time. With less time spent cooking, I get to spend more time with my guests.
Breakfast Ham and Egg Tarts
Yields 4 individual tarts
1 batch basic tart dough or frozen pie crust to fit 4 mini-tart pans
4 ounces ham, cut into 1/2-inch strips
2 tablespoons rosemary, chopped
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 cup English cheddar cheese, or more to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
Roll out dough or unroll thawed pie crust carefully and cut to fit four 4-inch tart pans. Refrigerate for at least one hour. It is preferable to use tart pans with removable bottom plates so that the cooked tarts may easily be removed.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line the tart shells with parchment paper and fill with pie weights or beans. Bake until tart shells are set, about 8 minutes. Remove the paper and weights and continue baking until the shells are golden brown, about an additional 5 minutes. Transfer the tart pans to a wire rack and let cool completely.
For faster assembly of the tarts, divide all the filling ingredients into four portions, one for each tart. Line the bottom of each shell with ham and sprinkle with chopped rosemary. Crack an egg into the center and then pour heavy cream over the egg. Sprinkle with cheese. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bake the egg until the egg whites are set and the yolks are a bit runny, about 13 minutes.
Transfer the baked tarts to a wire rack to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Using pot holders, push the bottom of each pan to release the tarts. Set on individual plates.
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