Friday, July 9, 2010

Who are you calling a tart?

When I told Chris I was making a tart to bring to his uncle's house for lunch he thought I was referring to dessert. When I told him it would include CSA summer squash and local tomatoes he thought it was going to be a gross dessert. This tart was meant as an appetizer, or canape as his grandma put it, and the consensus was it tasted quite the opposite of gross. I explained a tart is like a shallow pie with no crust on top. And like any pie, it can be made sweet or savory.

Puff pastry dough is an inexpensive time-saver that gives simple dishes an elegant touch. Make sure you don't pick up phyllo dough by accident! They're similarly packaged in the freezer section of your grocery store, but they're not interchangeable. For this recipe I used 1 + 1/3 packets of the dough to fit my the large pan. Instead of prepared pesto I made my version with green and purple basil. I required a few more tomatoes and bigger squash than the recipe suggests, too. Next time perhaps braised artichokes or roasted asparagus would be good! I forgot to top mine with the chopped olives, and it could have used the extra tang since the goat cheese was so mild.

Summer Squash and Tomato Tart-- from Food and Wine Annual 2008

2 Tbsp evoo
1 lb small yellow squash sliced 1/4 in thick
1 large onion, halved and thickly sliced
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
2 Tbsp pesto
5 oz fresh goat cheese, softened
All Purpose flour, for dusting
14 oz puff pastry, chilled
1 plum tomato, very thinly sliced
1 large egg beaten with 2 Tbsp water
10 small pitted green olives, chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large skillet, heat the evoo. Add the squash and onion and season with salt and white pepper. Cover and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the squash and onion are lightly browned, about 5 min. Transfer the vegetables to a strainer and press lightly.

2. In a small bowl, blend the pesto with the goat cheese. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the puff pastry to a 13 inch square; trim the square to 12 inches. Prick the pastry all over with a fork and invert it onto the parchment lined baking sheet.

3. Spread the goat cheese all over the pastry, leaving a 1 inch border all around. Top with the squash mixture. Arrange the tomato slices on the tart and sprinkle with salt and white pepper. Fold up the sides, pressing the corners together. Trim any excess pastry at the corners. Brush the pastry with the egg wash and bake in the lower third of the oven for approximately 45 minutes, until the edges are golden and the bottom is completely cooked through. Sprinkle with the olives, cut and serve right away. This tart can be assembled and refrigerated for 2 hours before baking.

1 comment:

  1. love it! cooking is fun, artistic, and therapeutic. i think what you're doing is wonderful and i am waiting to find the recipe for your homemade marinara sauce. you once made it in college and froze 8 gallons of it in our freezer...lasted us the whole year :) i would love to make my own homemade sauce...let me know when you have it posted. i'll be waiting...