Monday, November 14, 2011

Pomo carrot tart

Try as I might, I can never manage to finish laying a spiral of slices of... something... right in the center.

Following my complaint that my tarts are always decentralized, Andy encouraged the above moniker. Entertaining though it may be, I'd like to develop enough skill to make sure all my carrot slices (or apple slices or whatever) follow a fixed hierarchy.

That being said, this is really tasty. You can omit the raisins in the filling, and if you don't have or like rye flour, use whole wheat or just all white flour. Note that the vinegar in the crust isn't for taste. A little bit of acid--vinegar, lemon juice, even vodka--helps make the crust flaky, as does keeping all the ingredients as cold as possible.

Pomo carrot tart
For the crust:
1.25 sticks frozen butter, cubed
3.5 oz rye flour
3 oz all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white vinegar
1/4 cup ice cold water

Use a food processor to mix the butter, flours, and salt until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs. Add the vinegar and ice water and mix just until it comes together in a ball. Refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight. Roll out on a well-floured, cool to cold surface and place into your pie dish, decorating as desired. Blind-bake at 425 F for 5 minutes and at 350 for an additional 7.

For the filling:
1.5 lbs carrots
2 shallots
1 tbsp butter
1 egg
(here's where things start to break down, because I stopped measuring)
1/4 to 1/3 cup whole milk
salt, pepper, tarragon
honey (about 1 tsp)
lemon juice (1/4 tsp, ish)
about 1/4 cup raisins, optional
1 tbsp honey mixed with 2 tsp water, for glazing

Peel and trim the carrots. Use a mandoline or very sharp knife to cut thin slices from the large ends of the carrots until you have about a cup of them for decoration. Boil the rest until very soft. Meanwhile, chop the shallots and saute in 1 tbsp butter (or olive oil) until transparent. Add the carrots and puree the whole shebang. Stir in milk, honey, and lemon juice, and, when the mixture has cooled somewhat, the egg. Add salt, pepper, and tarragon to taste, keeping in mind that the flavor of tarragon intensifies somewhat with heat. I'm thinking that cooking the tarragon with the shallots will allow you to better gauge what the flavor will be like after baking. If you like, stir in raisins. Spread in the tart shell and layer the carrot slices on top. Brush with the honey-water glaze. Bake at 350 F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the slices on top are tender and browning. Cool slightly before serving.

1 comment:

  1. > Blind-bake at 425 F for 5 minutes and at 350 for an
    > additional 7.

    This seems weird to me. Does your oven fall from 425F to 350F in anywhere near 7 minutes? I'd hope it takes much longer than that to leak so much heat...