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Mini roasted vegetable tarts

Posted in Baking, and Food & Entertaining

A few days ago, a neighbor came over to perform minor surgery on Portia. I had just gotten back from school and, other than some commercial cookies, I didn’t have much to offer. Enter some frozen chocolate chip cookie dough that, in 20 minutes, yielded freshly baked cookies.

Similarly, the week before, a friend stopped by: I sliced a log of frozen olive cookie dough and, again, in 15 minutes, I had a lovelier and tastier nibble than chips and nuts.

The freezer is my friend. If I make a cake, or a tart, or any kind of pastry, I tend to make a bit more and stick the surplus in the freezer. It never goes to waste. Especially if I make pate brisee for a savory tart or a pie, I make sure to double the recipe for when I need to make something in a hurry.

I love making vegetable tarts because they can be made ahead, reheated and, with a salad, they become a meal. They are also easy to carry for a potluck or picnic. But a few nights ago I didn’t seem to have enough pate brisee in the freezer for an entire tart so I improvised smaller versions using a muffin tin. I used bell peppers and zucchini but any vegetable will lend itself for a filling.

First of all I roasted a couple of red peppers under a broiler until the skin was charred. I let them cool, peeled them, removed the seeds and sliced them in thin strips.

Then I cubed 3 zucchini and cooked them in a pan with some olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper until very tender, with a few brown edges here and there.

In a bowl, I mixed about half a cup of ricotta, one egg, a couple of tablespoons of grated Parmesan, the cooked vegetables, salt and pepper. I rolled my dough and cut it into 4″x4″ squares. I sprayed the muffin pan and pressed the squares into the rounds, leaving the edges dangling.

I filled the tarts and folded the edges over the filling, brushed them with some egg wash and baked them at 400F/200C for about half an hour, or until golden.

The end results were really pretty – not to mention tasty – and I can see repeating the experiment when a crowd comes over or when I am in need of an easy portable lunch.

Here is a reliable pate brisee recipe (or else buy pie dough from the market)

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  1. Yum! I am a great one for using my freezer and have puff and shortcrust pastry available at all times, and have made little tartlets with veggies before. However this recipe of yours for muffin-tin tartlets is pure genius. I have to take a plate of bites to a Chinese party here in Beijing on Saturday…plan to wow them with your recipe!!

    October 22, 2017
  2. Davvero una bella idea, in tuttii sensi. Anche io faccio sempre quantità doppie di pasta, che poi surgelo per la volta successiva

    October 21, 2017
    • Poi mi dimentico di tutta la pasta che ho in frigo e, quando me ne accorgo, comincio con l’ondata di torte salate etc etc

      October 24, 2017
      • Succede anche nelle migliori famiglie 😉

        October 24, 2017
  3. That’s a good tip about making extra and freezing it. I never really considered that for baked/sweet goods, and certainly never froze a cake before. How do you defrost a cake? Just in the oven at a low temp?

    And of course the tarts look delicious. I just love pastry in general 😀

    October 20, 2017
    • Never defrost in the oven, always at room temperature or overnight in the fridge. Then, if it’s something that can be reheated, reheat in the oven.

      October 21, 2017
      • Excellent. I’m gonna do some baking this afternoon 🙂

        October 21, 2017
  4. silvia

    I adore veggie tarts. We should do this too. By the end of my stay with you I’ll be fat like a pig 🐷

    October 19, 2017

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