Not exactly sure why I’ve never made a savoury tart before, I have a sneaky suspicion that I wasn’t keen on them as a child – possibly a bad one past my lips and I’ve been a bit prejudice ever since. As it turns out I’m rather fond of a tart (said the actress to the bishop) What isn’t there to be fond of? Pastry – tick. Stuff you like – tick. Suspended in Egg – tick. Topped with cheese – tick.
This particular tart experiment was made to serve for my Vegetarian Mother for a *ahem* light lunch – I fiddled with a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe that I found on Gourmet Chicks blog. I added a tablespoon of Tahini but to be honest I couldn’t taste it, so next time I’ll probably try adding another spoonful at least or leave it out all together. The original recipe added thyme to the egg mixture and sprinkled more on top – I had intended to do this but even though I reminded myself 3 times I still completely forgot until it was in the oven. Perhaps it would’ve been even more awesome with the thyme but I suspect I didn’t really miss it.
I was really impressed with the result, as were my parents – there is no doubt in my mind that I’ll be making this again.
Roasted Vegetable Wholemeal Tart
makes 10 decent sized slices
300g / 10z wholemeal flour
150g / 5oz chilled unsalted butter, cubed
pinch of salt
4 – 5 tbsp chilled water
mixed sweet mini peppers – about 7 or 2 regular sized peppers
1 small aubergine – diced
1 small sweet potato – peeled & diced
1 courgette – diced
1 large while onion – finely sliced
2 bay leaves
120g / 4 oz ricotta cheese
120g / 40z feta – diced
8 cherry tomatoes – halved
200ml / 7 floz double cream
1 tbsp tahini
salt & pepper to taste
To make the pastry, place the flour, butter & salt into a bowl and with your fingertips rub together – much like you would for a crumble but unlike a crumble a dough will start to form. Add a tablespoon of water at a time until you have formed a smooth dough. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 230°c / 450°f / gas mark 8 – remove the stalks & seeds of the peppers, drizzle with olive oil in a tray & roast until the skins start to turn brown about 20-30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cover with tinfoil. Once cooled peel of the skin and cut into strips.
Mix the aubergine & sweet potato with a little olive oil and roast in the oven for between 30-45 minutes, until the sweet potato softens – remember it will continue to be cooked in the tart so you don’t want it to breakdown too much. For the last 15 minutes add the courgette.
Once the pastry is chilled, place between two pieces of clingfilm and roll out until 0.3cm thick. Line a 23cm tart dish with the pastry, trim the overhang to leave you with about 2.5cm & roll the edges under – resting on the tart dish edge. Then crimp with your thumb & fingers.
Prick the base several times with a fork and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes – turn the oven down to 160°c / 320°f / gas mark 3
Fry the onion with the bay leaves in a little oil on a gentle heat until softened – roughly about 25 minutes. Careful they do not catch, you want them soft and sweet – not burnt & crisp.
Once chilled, line with baking parchment and fill with baking beans – bake for 20 minutes. Remove the parchment & beans and bake for a further 20 minutes.
Remove the tart from the oven, spread the onions over the bottom, evenly distribute the peppers, sweet potato, aubergine and courgette followed by dollops of the ricotta & cubes of feta and finally the halves of tomato.
Whisk together the eggs, cream, tahini & seasoning. Carefully pour into the tart – the cheese & tomato should remain exposed.
Bake in the oven for 45-60 minutes, until the filling is firm and golden.
This can be served after 10 minutes cooling time, I however served it the next day with lots of lovely salad. It keeps wrapped in the fridge for nearly a week. A very welcomed addition to my baking repertoire.