- —- For the Pastry —-
- 100 g Butter, cold, cut into 1cm dices
- 200 g Plain flour
- 8 Sage leaves, finely chopped
- 25 g Parmesan, finely grated
- —- For the Filling —-
- 2 bunches of Fenland Celery, remove outer leaves and trim roots (don’t separate out the sticks)
- 50 g Unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 tbsp Dark brown sugar
- 1 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
- Salt & freshly ground black pepper
- 25 g Parmesan, freshly grated, to sprinkle
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
- Make the pastry in a large bowl by tossing the diced butter in the flour, sage, parmesan and a pinch of salt. Add just enough ice-cold water, about 6-8 tablespoons, to bring it together into a firm dough that is not too sticky. There should be no loose pieces of fat or flour left in the bowl.
- Turn onto a floured work surface and roll into a rectangle of about 1 cm thick. Fold the top third into towards you into the middle, and the bottom third up over it – just like folding a letter.
- Turn the pastry by 90°, roll out to a rectangle again and repeat the folding. Repeat this turning, rolling and folding process 4 or 5 times, keeping the board and rolling pin lightly floured. Wrap the pastry in cling film and chill for at least an hour before using.
- Whilst the pastry is chilling, make the filling. Cut each Fenland celery bunch into half through the root, then each half into quarters leaving you with 8 pieces. Melt the butter with the oil in a frying pan that can go in the oven. Add the sugar, balsamic vinegar and celery and season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Cover the mix loosely with a piece of damp greaseproof paper and gently sweat for 15-20 minutes until the celery is soft & tender when pierced with the point of a knife.
- Remove the greaseproof paper, turn up the heat and fry for a further 5 minutes until lightly caramelized. Turn off the heat and spread the celery out evenly in a single layer over the base of the pan. Allow to cool a little.
- On a floured work surface roll out the pastry into a circle just a little larger than the frying pan. Carefully lift the pastry and lay over the celery, tucking the edges under.
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the pastry has puffed up. Remove from the oven and carefully turn out onto a baking sheet. Sprinkle with the rest of the parmesan and return to the oven for a further 5-10 minutes until the parmesan has browned and the pastry is cooked through.