Savory Zucchini Cheese Tart

It is hot as heck today so what I chose to do was bake. Something simple though. And I actually used a pie crust mix I got for my birthday as a gift. I measured out half the package and used it for the base of my zucchini tart. Yeap I know; folks complain about too many zukes and too little flavor. Not this gorgeous tart. It is thin slices layered over a thin lemony cream and goat cheese filling and topped with very thin sliced onions. Baked until the crust was crunchy. Really perfect crust and it is so rich and creamy plus this is super easy to make. Nothing needs to be cooked or fried – all raw; layer it on the raw crust. Bake, Slice, Enjoy. Winner winner hot night’s dinner.

You can use store zuke: I did; had none of my own yet. I did use my own red onion. I bet you could try other veggies but this combo was just so sublime. Narrow slices would make amazing appetizers or maybe cut it into small squares.  If you don’t like goat cheese just use all cream cheese. This is a variation on a Ina Garten recipe; she is a master at this sort of recipe.  Enjoy!

zuke tart, unbaked

zuke tart bakedLemony Zucchini and Cheese Tart

 

Ingredients

One pie crust; I used Bob’s GF Pie crust mix; y ou need 10 Tbsp cold butter or combo of butter and some other buttery spread, 3 Tbsp ice water and that’s it! Follow the directions. Mine needed a good chilling in the fridge before rolling out.

2 medium small zucchinis

1 medium red onion (can use regular yellow onion) sliced very thin (1/2 cup)

4 oz goat cheese plain or herbs (I used herbed) at room temp

4 oz cream cheese at room temp

Zest of half a lemon and about 1-2 Tsp juice from it

½ an egg beaten well

¼ Tsp fresh rosemary, minced finely

½ Tsp. fresh thyme leaves, off stem

EVOL; about 1-2 Tbsp.

Fresh ground black pepper

Directions: Made the pie crust, let chill while you do the veggies.  Slice the zucchini about 1/8 thick; less than ¼ inch thick.  I used a sharp paring knife. I know, the mandolin slicer; I do have one but sometimes it is just seems like too much work to get it out and set it up. I didn’t want the slices super thin anyway. Plus I enjoy knife work. Suit yourself.  Slice the peeled onion across in very thin circles. Put zuke slices in a colander and sprinkle with sea salt; ½-1 Tsp.; try to get it on both sides. Let stand 30-40 minutes. Then wipe with a few paper towels or a lint free tea towel to get off most of the moisture.  In a small bowl mix the two cheeses until smooth; add egg, lemon zest, lemon juice, herbs. Blend well.

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out pie crust into 11 inch circle; put on heavy pizza pan. Top with cheese mix; spread to ½ inch of the edge of your crust. Top with the thin slices of dried off zuke overlapping a bit in concentric circles. To fill the entire area with the cheese spread. Then sprinkle on top the red onion, which you have separated into rings. Top with a good drizzle of decent EVOL and a few grinds of fresh pepper.

Bake for 40-45 minutes. Until crust is well browned. If it is getting too brown turn oven down to 375; I did. Monitor closely; no burnt top please! Let cool before cutting. Enjoy.  zuke tart slice

Apple Tart…Veganized But Still Yummy

 

My assignment was to make a vegan (and gluten free) dessert to take to a small gathering out of town. I have to confess I am not particularly fond of some vegan desserts I have tried: the mouth feel is sometimes odd and the texture can be heavy especially icings. But I felt those things could be avoided. There were still plenty of apples from our picking expedition in October so that seemed like a great place to plan from. I am not yet rolling out pie dough plus it has an egg in it so that’s a no…so I did a shortbread cookie crust made in my stand mixer in a few minutes with no real work. I really didn’t miss the rolled out crust; this simple press in crumb recipe by Annalise Roberts is the very best crust for sweetness and texture. And great for gimpy folks like me!

The tart was a complete success; the crust tasted delicious and not weird. All gone in moments; silence as everyone inhaled their slice. Shortly thereafter two other non-vegan guests sidled up to me and quietly thanked me for a great dessert; they were probably glad there was no weird icing involved, LOL! This could be an excellent holiday dessert if you need one that is vegan.  It travels great; I have a pie saver – big diameter, low cylinder tupperware meant just for pies and tarts.

Notes: I used a mixture of baking apples; some golden delicious and Jonagold. Any baking apples will work (Not red delicious as they are best eaten raw) …no honeycrisp either; best raw.

vegan apple tart unbaked

vegan apple tart baked

I forgot to take a picture of my slice before devouring it: sorry; it was great looking, everything held together perfectly.

Apple Tart with Vegan Cookie Crust

Ingredients:

CRUST:

1 cup gf flour (King Arthur basic gf blend)

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp. xanthan gum

5  Tbsp. cold Earth Balance (sold in sticks just like butter)

FILLING:

3 -4 cups of peeled, cored and sliced cooking apples (4 good sized apples)

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

2 Tbsp. Tapioca flour or KA basic gf blend

1/3 c sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1 Tbsp. coarse sugar for topping

DIRECTIONS: Crust: use a stand mixer; put dry ingredients in bowl, add cut up Earth Balance and mix on medium until crumbly. Spray 9 inch tart pan with cooking spray and press in crust, heat oven to 375 degrees.  My pan has a removable bottom but I don’t see why you couldn’t use a plain pan.

Filling: mix dry ingredients in a small bowl, Mix filling in medium bowl; dump in apples, sprinkle with lemon juice and then sprinkle over all with all of the dry mix. Gently place into tart pan on crust and sprinkle top with coarse sugar. I took the time to arrange mine in a pretty pattern but you can just pile it in if you are in a rush.

Bake on lowest shelf in oven, 35-40 minutes until lightly browned and bubbling. Remove from oven and cool at least 30-60 minutes before serving. Best eaten within 24 hours. Vanilla ice cream is great with apple tart! Enjoy.

Note: You can use the convection setting; takes about 25-30 minutes to bake.

Blueberry Tart 2.0; Cookie Crust

 

Well, still got a cast on right arm, no can roll out pie dough. So, great option   is a press in cookie crust make in stand mixer. Perfect fit in my blueberry tart, with almond crumble topping.  It was tender and held together well. It was not soggy. Best eaten within 24 hours if humid and hot.  Have to say it was still rather tricky to get out of my oven due to my cast and the inability to lift much with my right hand. I did the almonds but honestly I think next time I’m ditching them, just wanna taste the blueberries! It was delish as made but I want simpler next  tart/pie. I did freeze a slice for Joe who wasn’t around  to enjoy any.

blueberry tart with cookie crust unbaked

Before baking – sorry for rough quality, blame my freaking cast!

 

Make sure you washthe blueberries and pick out any bad ones, buy top quality, matters always. I really didn’t miss the rolled out crust; this simple press in crumb recipe by Annalise Roberts is the very best crust for one handers! Hah!

blueberry tart baked, cookie crust

Blueberry Tart with Cookie Crust

 

Ingredients:

CRUST:

1 cup gf flour (King Arthur basic gf blend)

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp. xanthan gum

¼ tsp. cinnamon, optional

5  Tbsp. cold butter

FILLING:

3 1/2 cups blueberries

2 Tbsp. Instant Tapioca

1/3 c sugar

¼ tsp. cinnamon

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

CRUMBLE:

3/4 cup gf flour

5 Tbsp. butter

1/2 cup sugar

¼ tsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup sliced almonds (optional)

 

DIRECTIONS: Make crust in stand mixer; put dry ingredients in, add butter and mix on medium until crumbly. Spray 9 inch tart pan with cooking spray and press in crust, heat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix filling in medium bowl; dump everything in and let stand while you make crumbs. Standing helps the tapioca dissolve. Pour into tart pan on crust and sprinkle top with crumble to mostly cover fruit;

Mix crumbs: use stand mixer: no need to clean bowl. Dump in flour and sugar and cinnamon, mix, blend in butter and then sprinkle 1 ¼ cups on tart; top with almonds

Bake on lowest shelf in oven, 35-40 minutes until lightly browned and blueberries are bubbling. Remove from oven and cool before serving. Best eaten within 24 hours. Vanilla ice cream is great with blueberries! Enjoy.

blueberry tart, slice , cookie crustNote: I used convection setting; took about 25 minutes to bake.

Apricot Tart With Crumble Topping

Apricots are among my favorite fruits. I have made a lovely rectangular fresh apricot tart in the past. But this needed to be different as I was  short a few  fruits for that version.  I had about ten ripe apricots. And my huge problem is I broke my right wrist July 2 and cannot roll out a regular pie crust. Solution: press in cookie crust make in stand mixer. Perfect fit in my planned rectangular tart.  I did a cream cheese custard layer and an almond crumble topping.  It was tender and light in texture. Best eaten within 24 hours.  Have to say it was rather tricky to get a hot tart out of my oven due to my cast and a complete inability to lift with right hand.

I used a long rectangular pan with removable bottom. A round tart pan is great too. I think it might work with small nectarines if not firm or squishy.

I didn’t take pictures; hard enough to bake with one hand! Sorry. Next time I will snap a bunch.

apricot tartapricot tart slice2

Angie’s Apricot Tart With Almond Crumble

Ingredients:

8-10 ripe apricots

CRUST:

1 cup gf flour

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp. xanthan gum

¼ tsp. cinnamon

5  Tbsp. cold butter

FILLING:

6 oz light cream cheese, room temp.

¼-1/3 c sugar

½ tsp. almond extract

1 lg egg, room temp.

CRUMBLE:

2/3 cup gf flour

2 Tbsp. butter

¼ cup brown sugar

¼ tsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup sliced almonds

DIRECTIONS: Make crust in stand mixer; put dry ingredients in, add butter and mix on medium until crumbly. Spray tart pan with cooking spray and press in crust, Cut apricots in half, remove pits. Heat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix crumbs: use stand mixer: no need to clean bowl. Dump in flour and sugar and cinnamon, mix, blend in butter and then almonds.

Mix filling in medium bowl with portable mixer; mix sugar and cream cheese and then add egg and flavoring. Pour into crust. Nestle apricot halves in it cut side down and sprinkle top with crumble to mostly cover fruit; probably won’t need it all.

Bake on lowest shelf in oven, 30-35 minutes. Lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool before serving. Best eaten within 24 hours. Vanilla ice cream is great with it if that’s your thing! Enjoy. apricot tart slice

Blueberry Tart with Almond Crumb Crust

Dead of winter…not blueberry season. I know. But sometimes you gotta break the rules for the one you love.  For our Valentine’s dessert…the blueberry tart made him really happy. That makes me smile.  And I know he enjoyed this dessert so much. He left here with two slices; very pleased indeed!

blueberry tarts topped

It’s a very simple and easy recipe with a special almond sprinkle on top of the crumb crust. If you don’t want to get blueberries out of season; try it with cranberries; just up the sugar a bit; maybe ½ to 2/3 cup then. This tart will make 6 generous slices of dessert heaven.

blueberry tart, untopped

bueberry tart unbaked

Angie’s Blueberry Crumb Tart

Crust:

1 c plus 2 Tbsp. brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

2 Tbsp. sweet rice flour

1 Tbsp. granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbsp. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 lg egg

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Directions:

Mix dry crust ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and lemon juice.  Mix briefly until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes while you mix up the filling and heat the oven.  Then roll out and put in the tart pan.

Filling:

2 pints fresh blueberries

1/4 cup sugar

2 Tbsp. instant tapioca

Sprinkle cinnamon

Topping:  ¼-1/3 cup sliced almonds

Mix all dry ingredients; pour over fruit and stir up and pour carefully into crust that you rolled out and placed into a 9 inch tart pan with a removable bottom or an 8 inch pie pan.   Top with the following crumbs:

In stand mixer: ¾ cup brown rice flour mix, ½ cup sugar, ½ tsp. xanthan gum and 1/3 cup cold butter cut into six chunks. Mix until the butter is in fine crumbs well blended with the dry ingredients. I use about 1 ¼ cup of crumbs on top of this tart; you can use as much or as little as you like. Don’t press on them; just lightly sprinkle over top of fruit mixture. Sprinkle with the sliced (or slivered) almonds

Bake on lowest shelf of your oven at 375 degrees for about 35 to 40 minutes; should be gently bubbling and lightly browned as to crust and lightly toasted almonds. Let cool and set for at least 1 hours before cutting.  Great with vanilla ice cream. I like it alone so I can savor the delicate flavors together; blueberry/cinnamon/almonds. Delish!blueberry tart baked

Brown Rice Flour Mix (same as King Arthur basic all purpose gf blend)

2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch – not potato flour!

1/3 c tapioca flour

The crust recipe is from Annalise Roberts great cookbook, GF Baking Classics, Second Edition. Filling is my easy and quick fruit mix for tarts. Enjoy! blueberry-tart-sliced.jpg