Beetroot tart tatin

Beetroot tart tatin
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Beetroot tart tatin
Beetroot tart tatin
Beetroot tart tatin

I first stumbled upon beetroot tart Tatin at the amazing The Table restaurant. This fantastic spot, found on De Meye wine farm is one of my favourite places to eat in Cape Town. The entire concept is organic farm to table and although you’ve heard it all before, this time it truly is... The beautiful garden is just two years old and filled with amazing vegetables, fruits and berries. They use as much fresh produce from the garden as possible. 
The restaurant quips that the garden is out of their control and they wouldn't have it any other way. 

Sometimes things grow successfully and sometimes...well... not so much. 
I know this to be true because I have undertaken a small garden on my balcony here at home and I must commend them for their successes because they don't always happen. 
In fact; I find it more of a miracle when magic does eventually happen on my small balcony.
Having the sweet satisfaction of eating something home grown is simply the best! 
It’s organic, healthy and a true labour of love. Now, who wouldn't want to put that energy into your body? 

Each week they select their vegetables from the garden and source the rest from local farmers and then formulate the menu for the weekend. 
The food is mouth watering and I have never tasted a beetroot tart Tatin like I did that day. 
All the dishes have an element of farm comfort to them and are served on unique antique style platters. 

You can sit under the trees and feast family style, which might I add is my favourite. 
More is more and of course, De Meye wine is the perfect complement to the feast at hand! 

Bookings are essential! Click here to book. 


Ingredients: 

8 medium sized beetroots, (I mixed it up and got candied beets.) Cooked and peeled. 
1 large red onion
4 sprigs of lemon thyme (you can use normal thyme)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
sour cream to serve
salt and pepper

For the shortcrust pastry:

200g plain flour
125g chilled butter sliced into cubes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3 tablespoons cold water 

OR you can use Puff Pastry store bought, same as The Table (Which I must confess is perfection.) Don't forget you will need an egg to egg wash the pastry! 


Instructions:

In a large bowl mix the flour, salt, butter. Using your hands rub the flour and butter between your fingers until the dough is crumbly. Make a well in the center and add the egg and water. Mix well until the dough forms a soft ball. If the dough is too sticky then you can add flour if needed. Wrap the ball in cling wrap and put it in the fridge until you are ready to use it. 

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius.

Remove the skin from the beetroots and slice them into 1cm thick discs. 
In a large frying pan over a medium to high heat add the beets, red onion, butter, and sugar. Fry for 12 minutes until it starts to caramelize. Add the balsamic and thyme and fry for a further 2 minutes until the sauce becomes glossy and beautiful! Don't forget to season the beets! 

Now to assemble your tart! 

Grease a round cake tin. A 20cm size will do. 
Layer the beetroots in the cake tin so the surface of the tin is entirely covered. You can layer them like fish scales. Make sure you do this nicely as it will be the top of your tart when inverted. Add the red onions and sauce. 

Using a rolling pin roll out your dough until you have a disk big enough to cover the beets and tuck it in on the side, then prick it with a fork.
If you are using puff pastry, do the same and brush the pastry with a whisked egg. The tart will be inverted so make sure you tuck it in nicely! 

Bake for 30 minutes in a preheated oven or until golden brown. Leave to cool for ten minutes before turning it out gently. Serve on a beautiful dish with a healthy dollop of sour cream! 

-Melissa
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fig Tarts

I recently found these beautiful plump figs at the local food market. It's called the Oranjezicht City Farm and it is in Granger Bay. The market is centered on fresh produce from your local farmer that is grown organically and ethically. I make a concerted effort to buy only organic and free range products for my household.

Organic food is something that in recent years has become quite prominent in my life. I feel there has been an awakening within me to know what I’m putting into my body and where it comes from. The food industry is a multi-billion-dollar corporation and the facts are that health and wellness are sacrificed in mass production. I have to ask, how often do you check where your eggs come from and how your beef found its way onto your plate? These are questions we need to ask ourselves. For instance, there are no long-term studies on how the hormones in our milk affect us and our children. Now don't get me wrong, I am not preaching veganism. I'm not even preaching vegetarianism. I am simply saying that arming yourself and your family with knowledge about what we eat will create a healthier life for you and the animals out there.

Now let's get back to my figs and how they transformed into one of the tastiest tarts I have ever baked.


serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 15 whole figs, washed
  • 30 grams castor sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • Zest of one orange
  • ¼ cup raw almond

For the short crust pastry

  • 125 grams butter
  • 100 grams icing sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • 255 grams of plain flour
  • 1 vanilla pod, scored lengthways and seeds removed
  • Zest of ½ a lemon
  • 2 large yolks, preferably organic
  • 2 tablespoons cold milk or water

For the frangipane

  • 275 grams almond flour
  • 55 grams plain flour
  • 255 grams unsalted butter
  • 255 grams castor sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 vanilla pod, scored lengthways and seeds removed (you can also use vanilla paste if you have, just add a teaspoon)
  • 1 tablespoon grappa

Instructions:

You have two options when making this. Option one: you can make it in a 28cm-greased tin or options two: in individual tartlets. I chose to make individual ones.

Preheat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius.

To make your pastry, cream together the butter, icing sugar and salt and rub in the flour, vanilla seeds or paste, lemon zest and eggs yolks – you can do this all by hand or you can do it in a food processor.  When the mixture looks like coarse bread crumbs you can add the milk or water. Pat and gently work the mixture together until you have a ball of dough, then flour it lightly. Do not over work the pastry or it will become chewy instead of flaky. Wrap in cling film and let it rest in the fridge for at least an hour. Remove it from the fridge, roll it out and line your tart tins or tin. Place in the freezer for an hour.

Remove from freezer and bake the pastry for 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from the oven and turn it down to 170 degrees Celsius.

To make the frangipane, beat together your sugar and butter until light and creamy. Add your almond flour, lightly beaten eggs, vanilla and grappa. Beat until the mixture is smooth.  Place the mixture in the fridge for at least a half hour or until mixture is firm. 

Remove the stems from the figs. Score them at the top in a cross shape. Using your thumbs push up from the base opening the figs slightly.

Spoon the chilled frangipane mixture into the pastry cases or into the large tart tin, then lightly push the figs into the frangipane with the scored side up. Heat the sugar with the water and drizzle the syrup over the figs. Roughly chop the almonds and sprinkle over the top with the thyme leaves and orange zest.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 40 minutes if you are doing the single big tart and 30 – 35 minutes for the individuals, or until the frangipane mixture has become firm and golden on the outside but still soft in the middle.

Allow cooling for about 30 – 40 minutes.

Serve with a dollop of mascarpone and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

-Melissa

Source: www.thetrufflejournal.com/fig-tarts

rhubarb and honey tart

Rhubarb is not something I was not familiar with growing up as a child. I’m not sure why, but we just never used it. In my adult life I must admit the first person I saw use rhubarb was Jamie Oliver. He grows it in his garden and he uses it in so many recipes. Thanks to him I got the bee in my bonnet and decided to hunt down a great recipe. This one is so tasty because of it's layering of not only rhubarb but frangipane and honey which balances out the tart flavours of this celery like plant. I’m rather excited that I have discovered rhubarb and there are definitely many more exciting recipes to come. 

For this recipe you can use your own home made puff pastry or store bought puff pastry. If you get a good store bought puff there is no judgment here. Although I do think that home made just tastes better.


Serves: 6 

Ingredients:

Puff pastry:

•    250 grams cake flour

•    Pinch of salt 

•    250 grams butter

•    5ml lemon juice or brandy 

•    175ml ice cold water Filling:

•    1 cup almond flour

•    6 tbsp. castor sugar

•    ¼ cup cake flour

•    ¼ tsp. salt

•    6 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened

•    3 eggs

•    1 tsp. vanilla

•    1 fresh bunch of rhubarb roughly 500g (I like to go for the reddest stalks)

Instructions:

preheat oven to 200c

Puff pastry:

Sift flour and salt into a bowl. Rub in a piece of butter the size of a walnut. 

Add lemon juice or brandy to water, make a well in the center of flour and pour in about 2/3 of the liquid.

Mix it with a palette knife or a round bladed knife. When the dough is beginning to form, add the remaining water.

Turn the dough out on to a clean counter that has been dusted with flour. Knead the dough for 2-3 minutes, and then roll out to a square about 1.3-2cm thick.

Beat the remaining butter if necessary to make it pliable and place in center of dough. Fold the dough up over butter to enclose it completely (sides and ends over center like a parcel)

Wrap it in a cloth or in greaseproof paper and refrigerate for 15-20 minutes 

Flour your clean worktop, take the dough out, the join facing upwards, and bring rolling pin down on the dough 3-4 times to flatten slightly.

Now roll out to a rectangle about 1.3-2cm thick. Fold into three, ends to middle, as accurately as possible, if necessary pulling the ends to keep them rectangular.

Seal the edges with hand or rolling pin and turn the dough half round to bring the edges toward you.

Roll out again and fold in three (keep note of the turns given)

Set aside in refrigerator for 5 minutes. Repeat this process, giving a total of six turns with a 15 minutes rest after each two turns. Then leave in the refrigerator until wanted. 


Roll out pastry to fit a baking sheet. Place pastry on greaseproof paper on baking sheet and keep chilled in the fridge or freezer until needed. If the butter in the pastry melts it will not puff up.

To make the almond paste, pop everything in a food processor and blend until thoroughly mixed. You can mix by hand but make sure you use good elbow grease! 

Evenly trim down the rhubarb stalks. Gently sauté stalks in a little butter and pinch of sugar until they begin to soften. Set aside to cool.

To assemble the tart: spread the almond paste evenly over the pastry. Place the rhubarb on top of the almond paste sideways next to each other-like little soldier and fold in the sides of the pastry. Brush the sides with a beaten egg yolk.  Place in the oven and turn heat down to 180C and bake for 40mins, checking towards the end that it does not brown too much.

When removed from the oven dust with icing sugar.

To serve: drizzle with honey and cut 

-Melissa

 

  

Source: www.thrtrufflejournal.com