Friday, 16 May 2014
Clearing the freezer out - Ratatouille Tart
I wish it could always be this way, a mooch through the cupboards and fridge, finding some sad looking ingredients and transforming them into something happy looking, but I am not that good and I don't have time. However, what I do know is that good shop bought pastry is worth buying and stashing in the freezer, (particularly if you stock up on the way back from France after a couple of weeks of quality time with the kids and Phill), some vegetables do not necessarily suffer from being frozen, particularly if you roast them with a little bit of olive oil and some herbs, and three eggs sets 300ml cream - so tart time it is, with some ingredients that needed using up.
I bought some ratatouille mix from the frozen aisle at Tesco as previously I had bought their roasted peppers and really liked them. I used some of them for a pasta sauce and then I forgot I had them. Then we moved house and whilst transferring undistinguishable zip loc bags of 'something' coated in permafrost from the old freezer to a new freezer (new house, new freezer...) I found them, and I thought to myself I must use these. Then I found the pastry. And there it was. Dinner.
šTo make this a bit more French, like that was possible, I cut up some chunks of goats cheese, the rind of which had seen better days, but the inside was still smooth and creamy. I then felt mightily self satisfied that I had made something effectively out of what I had and leftovers and then wished I could always be this good. We waste too much, and I wish I had the time to be more savvy with the ingredients that I do have.
Serves Lola, Finn, Mum, Dad and one other
One pack of ready rolled shortcrust pastry
half a pack of Tesco ratatouille mix
two teaspoons of dried herbs (I used herbes de Provence)
50g goats cheese, cut into cubes.
salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 180c. Put the ratatouille mix onto a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and scatter the herbs over. Season and mix around so that everything is evenly distributed. Cook according the instructions, but it will probably take about 25 minutes for everything to become caramelised. Allow to cool to just warm.
Put another baking tray into the oven to heat up.
Meanwhile, unroll the pastry and carefully place it into a greased 8 inch loose bottomed tart tin. Let the excess hang over the sides of the pan. Prick the bottom of the tart with a fork and then place a piece of greaseproof paper into the bottom and then pour in some baking beans. Put the tart onto the baking tray that you placed in the oven (this will help you to avoid the dreaded soggy bottom), Bake the tart case blind for about 20/25 minutes, removing the greaseproof paper and the beans for the last 10 minutes of cooking. Take the tart case out of the oven and allow to cool.
Make the custard by beating the eggs and the cream together until thoroughly combined. Season, bearing in mind that the roasted vegetables and the goats cheese will contain some saltiness.
Scatter the cooled ratatouille over the bottom of the part baked tart case. Then place the cubed cheese over the ratatouille evenly.
Pour the egg and cream mixture into the tart case, Pour until the case is full, but do not over fill.
Put the tart case onto a baking tray and place in the oven. Cook for about 35 minutes at 180, or until the top is starting to brown and the custard is set. If it is browning without setting, cover the tart with foil.
Serve warm (not hot) or at room temperature.