Friday, August 28, 2009

Tarts

Well, life has been busy....And I thought our move to the country will bring a more relaxed and slow lifestyle....but far from it.
But I can hardly contain my happiness at living in this little town. I just about love everything about our life at the moment. Making new connections, meeting amazing and like-minded people, discovering the joys of family bike rides. Watching seasons change is such a dramatic way at our doorstep. And as I write this, I am observing two rainbow Lorikeets feast on the bird feeder outside my window...
And lets not forget the joy of seeing our children greedily absorb all they can from their busy days. Busy in a very relaxed kind of way....with playing, creating, imagining and just rolling in the grass watching the clouds float by. On our 'home-days', the three disappear into their own world and only emerge when their tummies grumble or when a bruised knee needs some mama attention. Well, do I need to say more...

Onto some food lately discovered:


I like tarts and pies but I never took to making them. To use bought pastry does not seem right and to make my own, well, who has got the time?
The other day however I was watching a friend make this dough with wholemeal spelt flour. She used olive oil and water and it just looked so simple. No chopping of cold butter, no chilling...easy.
The very next day another friend arrived at my door asking for a pie crust recipe for a filling she had already prepared. She was looking for something more wholesome that the Pampas frozen sort. So I passed along the above mentioned. So with her filling and the pie crust recipe I had to try it out....So here is my version:



Pumpkin, Split peas and Feta Pie



Filling:

1 small jap pumpkin, cut into cubes
1/2 cup green split peas
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 block of Feta
2 tbs cottage cheese or ricotta
some spinach or rocket
herbs such as basil, rosemary or thyme

Pastry:



2 cups wholemeal flour or spelt
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 water

Blind bake the pie base at 200C for about 15min. As a variation, I sprinkled some sesame seed onto the base before blind baking it. When your Pie is done, start layering the filling as follows:
Start by roasting your pumpkin with some olive oil and sea salt and your chosen herb. Then saute the onion in some oil, add the peas and then water to cover. Boil the peas until they are tender, adding more water as needed.

Mix the flour with the salt and lemon rind. Drizzle over the olive oil and water and mix to form a soft dough, divide in half. On a floured table, roll one half into the size of your pie tin. Press base into tin and poke holes into base with a fork. Chill for 30 min.



  • First spread your peas onto base, dollop the cottage cheese evenly over, then the pumpkin, spinach and feta.


Finally, cover the pie with your remaining pastry.


Don't forget to make a small incision on the top of the pie lit to let out the steam while baking. You may want to glaze the top with some egg or milk and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Enjoy with a crisp salad.



Another variation I made today and is saucy and delicious!!




Lasagne Tart





this is inspired by one of my favorite food bloggers Heidi from 101 Cookbooks. Check out her recipe for this tart. She is amazingly creative and an inspiration when I feel like something very healthy and wholesome for the family.

Instead of ricotta I again chose low-fat cottage cheese and topped the tart with sliced zucchini, tomato sugo, mushrooms,grat ed mozzarella and some leftover Feta, to appeal to the little ones and Mr. P who loves his gooey lasagna...








Delicious on a rainy and dark Saturday











1 comment:

itchy said...

Lovely stuff! I didn't remember about the cool for 1/2 hour bit in the recipe and it works fine without bothering!