Surreal Green Vegetable Tart — Tarte aux légumes verts surréelle

Surreal Green Vegetable Tart

Leftovers or the Art to Extend the Use of Dough

I am not a baker. I am way too grumpy in early morning for that, not even to mention the clumsiness factor. But there is definitely something about baking strongly anchored in me. Remember? I once was elected “Miss Panini” while working in a kitchen in Italy during summers years ago. Like in the oscars! The spell had been thrown on me there! Knew it! Mamma Mia!

Whether it has to do with the smell of bread or a cake cooking in the oven, or working with my hands, I love the direct relationship I establish when I make dough. And I make a lot of it! Flour all around you, a floury fog in your kitchen. I l.i.k.e it! Working dough involves touch and feel as you are never sure how your batch will turn out. Surprise! Such things as the weather, the type of flour you use, the temperature and the amount of water you add, all play essential parts in the success of your dough. At each time it can be different. For many it looks laborious and difficult but the truth is that making dough is pretty easy and fully rewarding. Take my word for it.

I have always wondered why I had such an attraction to tarts of all kinds. So the answer to why I love tarts is simple. I am not a tarte (with the e please) but at home, there were always tarts to eat. The typical goûter could very well be a piece of tart, my favorite ones being rhubarb or plum tart ; no matter how old you are, in France people love this end of afternoon treat. It surely helps to keep your energy up until comes dinner time, which rarely is served before 7 pm. Oddily enough, history shows that tarts were not known as sweet dishes first. According to The Penguin Companion to Food, the words Tart (and tartlet) first appeared in the 14th century recipe compilation the Forme of Cury, and were first known as savoury dishes. They however very quickly evolved into sweet flavours. Tarte, tartelette, tourte, pie, tarta, tartaleta, torte, torta, whatever the language, I just love them all since after all, I am coming from Lorraine in France, where we are known for the quiche lorraine ( although this one is far from being my favorite). When well-made however, a quiche lorraine can be an excellent dish. And again, without a good dough, the chances for a tart to turn successful are more limited.

Whenever I make dough, I usually like to make a big batch so that I can use it for many different dishes in the course of the same week (thank you Mum for having taught me this). Last week, I realized that I had puff pastry left, which sooner or later would need to find a home. In my fridge, I also had a few vegetables, such as one leek, 2 courgettes (zucchinis) and herbs. I felt lucky. I almost had all the required ingredients to make a recipe I had caught a glimpse of a week before, while reading Delicious. I was set to work.

How to make puff pastry? Refer to my mango tatin tartlets recipe.

And the magic happens in the oven. Pouf! It goes up and up! Swelling like a balloon. There is chemistry there!

Green Vegetable Tart

(For 2 tarts, 30 cm by 15 cm, 12 inches by 6 inches)

You need:

  • Puff pastry
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 small zucchinis
  • 1 leek
  • 140 g ricotta cheese
  • 4 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 white egg
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Dash of cumin
  • Fresh basil and parsley

Steps:

  • Take out 1 cup frozen peas and let defrost.
  • Preheat your oven at 220 C (425 F).
  • Roll your puff pastry and make 2 rectangulars (30 cm by 15 cm) (12 inches by 6 inches). Make little holes in the dough with a fork so that it does not rise too much.
  • Mix together the ricotta, the parmesan cheese, a dash of cumin and salt and pepper.
  • Wash your vegetables. With a vegetable peeler, make long zucchini peels.
  • Form peels in the white part of the leeks.
  • Whip your egg white until frothy.
  • Mix together all vegetables with the egg white (it helps to prevent the vegetables from turning brown).
  • Chop the basil and parsley and add them to the vegetables.
  • Add salt and pepper.
  • On your dough, layer the ricotta preparation, leaving 1 inch all around to form an edge.
  • Place the vegetables over.
  • Pour a dash of olive oil.
  • Place in the oven for about 25 mns, or until golden. Serve warm or cold.

My love for tarts continues. As a matter of fact, it is one of my favorite lunch, kept simple with a piece of savoury tart accompanied by a few fresh salads.

Examples:

  • A piece of this tart served with a nice celery root salad and an arugula salad,
  • A piece of salmon quiche with a nice tomato salad with mozzarela and basil.

While composing those meals, a priority is placed into balancing colours. After all, we are what we eat AND before anything else, we eat with our eyes first.

Linguistic slang note: did you know that a real French insult is to say to someone “Espèce de tarte!” (What an imbecile you are!, literally meaning, you belong to the species called Imbeciles), old fashioned I am sure amongst the 2006 teenager crowd, but still used in my world!

Adapted from a recipe in Delicious.

Posted in Tarts, Vegetarian | 25 Comments

25 comments

  1. I think I need to employ you as my personal chef
    (as long as you clear up after the puff clouds of flour)

  2. Hi Bea this tart looks delicious.
    Anyway i was wondering if the orange picture of your banner had been taken in Quebec City; because i seem to remember having seen one like this at a restaurant when i was in Quebec City.
    Love
    Fanny

  3. Je suis sûr j’adorai ça! When it comes to vegi’s. Perfect job all the time.! Is it possible to e-mail the left over ! ha ha

  4. Very spring-flavored this tarte. The pea season is only 6 weeks ahead. Delicious, freshly picked peas from the garden will be a treat in this recipe.
    Great looking tarte!

  5. Thanks Kat. Not sure when the buffet starts ;-)

    Sam, if you do not ask me to get up too early, it could be a deal! Will you make florentins?? ;-) and as to the puff clouds, you would find them charming ;)

    Fanny, merci. Now as to the banner, funny you mention this. We made the banner from a photo we took in a restaurant in Montreal. So it is still inspired from Canada!!

    Sophie, merci bien. I agree, the salad has to be HUGE!! Cannot do without la salade verte!!

    Thanks a lot Claire Emma.

    Relly, email it, ahahaha, I should try, we can do anything these days, can’t we?

    Anne, tu as tout a fait raison, un super dejeuner, ce que je fais souvent! Ce sont les meilleurs!!

    Fabienne, yes tarts are the best….we the French love them, don’t we?

    Zoubida, only 6 week away?? Still cold here, I wonder when we will get them

    Emma, merci!! Nice to see you here!

  6. Bea, I love working with dough too: from pasta to focaccia, there’s something very fulfilling about turning what is essentially flour and water into something rich, and textured, and flavourful.

    Your tart looks wonderful, and I applaud your creativity with the ingredients.

  7. Ok.

    So it’s Friday night. I’m tired. But I make my cup of chai tea and I sit down to read my friend Bea’s blog and now I am so happy!

    Bea, we are kindred spirits. I know exactly how you feel about flour and dough and tarts … and I like your description of your kitchen when you’re making dough. I love getting my hands into it and having flour everywhere. It’s so beautiful!

    This tart … bellissima! And the dough is so golden and beautiful.

    I shall have sweet dreams tonight!

    Buona notte!

  8. Ok i may have seen this orange in montreal then. But i’m sure i saw it somewhere when i was in canada.
    Love
    Fanny

  9. Rob, thanks for your sweet note. I agree with you, nothing is more fulfilling thanwork dough.

    Ivonne, you are too nice ;-) I hope this brought sweat dreams to you! I can tell you would enjoy a flourful kitchen!!!

    Fanny, maybe indeed, the restaurant we were at was called Chez L’épicier and we loved the place. This is where we took the picture. Is that it?

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  13. I just made this tonight and it was delicious! Perfect for a summer night dinner. Thanks for sharing a great recipe!

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  15. I don’t mean to be a nag, but you have this listed under “vegetarian”. You may not know this, but parmesan cheese is not vegetarian because it uses calf rennet(the intestines of young cows to bind the cheese). There are however vegetarian parmesan cheeses out there, but in the future you should be aware of this fact.

  16. Hmmm, j’adore les tartes surtout les tiennes, aussi bonnes que belles.
    I tried this recipe yesterday with some light changes since it was a late night and I pretty much wanted to finish the rest of the ricotta in the fridge. I used long green beans (frozen) instead of peas and on an impulse, added some tuna chunks before laying out the veggies. Now this turned out to be un vrai regal. Une recette super fastoche et rapide. We treated ourselves to seconds with a big salad. Absolutely yummy!! Thanks for these great recipes :)

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  18. I recently attempted puff pastry using your recipe. I was pretty nervous, because I am such a novice in the kitchen, especially when baking. Something always go seriously awry! To my surprise, the dough turned out completely fine…it was delicious! I am going to try this veggie tart recipe tonight with some of my leftover dough. Now that I’ve got the dough sorted, tart-making should be a piece of cake!

  19. Hey, I was looking for ideas to use up some spare puff pastry and just found this recipe. It was really easy to do and delicious – my husband declared the touch of cumin in the cheese “inspired”! Thanks for posting.

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