Wednesday 14 November 2012

Tomato Tart

I recently got an invite from Sid Khullar Of  "Chef at Large" to join the "Lets Bake Tarts" event on CAL. It set me thinking "Is there a difference between tart and pies?"  I had certainly made a pie before, a Quiche so wouldn't a tart be same as making a pie. Atleast, that is what I have always believed. To get over my curiosity, I thought of surfing the net to get an answer to my question and also to be able to find a good recipe for a tart. My net surfing made me actually realize that, contrary to my belief, there was a difference (though,according to me, a minute one) between a Pie and a Tart. So, for all of you out there, who like me, also think that Pie and Tart are the same's a little knowledge-sharing....
2008_11_05-pie-dishes.jpgA pie is a sweet or savory dish with a crust and a filling. Traditionally, pie crusts are light and flaky.The sides of a pie dish or pan are sloped. It can have a just a bottom, just a top, or both a bottom and a top crust. A pie crust is traditionally made of flour, salt, cold water, and lard (or shortening) but many pie crust recipes use a combination of fats such as butter, lard, or vegetable shortening, or just butter. The goal is a crisp, flaky crust. They are typically an accompanying component and their contribution to the dish is mostly texture.  Apple pie, for example, has a sweet juicy filling and the crust gives it a beautiful contrast in textures with it’s flaky bite. Pies can be served straight from the dish in which they were baked. 
(The pictures of the baking pans have not been taken by me 
source )

2008_11_05-tart-pans.jpgA tart is a sweet or savory dish with shallow sides and only a bottom crust. Traditionally, pie crusts are light and flaky. It usually has eggs in it and always has butter for the strength.Tart crusts are typically short, meaning the butter is mixed into the dough completely. It has some amount of sugar and no binding agents to make it chewy, giving it a more ‘cookie like’ taste and texture, rather than the flaky texture of pie crust. The goal is a firm, crumbly crust. Tarts are baked in a pan with a removable bottom, or in pastry ring on top of a baking sheet so that it can be unmolded before serving.  Also, tarts have far less filling than pies.
So there, once my fundamentals were cleared up, I decided to move to the second step, that is to decide on the filling for my tart. Having just got over with the Diwali festivities, everyone had an overdose of the sweets so I decided to refrain from making a sweet tart (though I really wanted to make a chocolate tart (It remains on top of my wish-list) and settled for a savory tart. I settled for making a "Tomato tart " which looked quite appetizing and had simple and interesting flavors.
For the crust of my tart, I took the recipe from my newly acquired  Michael Roux's  book on "Pastry" (as it is, I was dying to make something from my new book.....)
300g Pâte Brisée (pie dough)
4 firm tomatoes, cut into round slices
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp dried garlic
1 tbsp brown sugar or balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp dried thyme leaves
200 g processed cheese, grated
1 tbsp mustard sauce
100 g mozarella cheese, cut into small cubes
200 g cream
2 eggs
zest  of 1 lemon
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 220C. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry to a circle about  4cm wider than the tin.Carefully lift the pastry into the tin and gently press into the base and sides, taking care not to stretch the pastry.Trim any excess pastry and prick the base with a fork.Chill for 20 minutes. 
Line the pie crust with a butter paper and fill with baking beans,
Blind bake the pie crust for 15 minutes till the sides start to brown. Remove the beans and bake for further 10 minutes, until golden and crisp. Keep aside to cool completely.

Meanwhile, put the tomatoes cut-side up in a roasting tin. Drizzle with the oil, dried garlic,sugar or vinegar and the dried thyme. Season. 
Roast in the oven for 20 minutes, until just wilted.
In a bowl, mix together the eggs, cream, processed cheese, mozzarella cheese, lemon zest, mustard sauce, salt and pepper. Season well with salt and pepper. Spoon evenly into the tart case and arrange the tomatoes over the top. 
Bake for 20 -25 minutes in a pre-heated oven, until set and golden.
Cool and carefully remove from the tart tin.
Cut the tart into wedges and serve.

1 comment:

  1. Wow.. looks appetizing.. Also I dint know the difference between tart and pie .. Thanx for sharing.