Beetroot Tart

Posted on March 15, 2014


Beetroot Tart on things{we}make

I first planted stripy Choggia beetroot back in 2012. They are a very pleasing to grow. Easy as pie and pretty as a picture.

Last year we had so many that we didn’t harvest them all. They sat in the ground all winter, occasionally losing a leaf to a passing chicken.

I imagined that they would end up in the compost heap, but then I was inspired by The Sugar Hit’s handsome Beetroot Tart. We had nothing in for dinner and a bed full of beets.

Worth a go I thought. I’ll pull them up and see what’s occurring.

Beetroot Tart on things{we}makeBeetroot Tart on things{we}makeGinger and BeetsBeetroot tart on things{we}make

They looked fine. No different to how they look in the Autumn. They had grown thicker skins over time, but don’t we all?

I peeled and cut them into hefty slices. My assistant demonstrates for you here:

Beetroot Tart on things{we}makeBeetroot Tart on things{we}make

They got tossed in oil, vinegar and herbs and roasted until softened. I placed them, face down in a tin slicked with more oil and vinegar. Topped them with fried red onions and garlic and a layer of crumbled feta cheese.

Then that all got snugged under a blanket of puff pastry and baked for half an hour.

Beetroot Tart on things{we}make

Let’s just talk about ready-rolled puff pastry for a moment shall we?

As a rule, I’m a shortcrust girl at heart. But we all know that even the cheffiest of chefs will admit to using a bit of Jus-Rol Puff. And why not? It is so convenient and a real hassle to make yourself…bla bla. But it drives me bonkers that it’s sold in a rectangle that’s not quite big enough to stretch to two pie-sized circles.

Call me a traditionalist, but I like a pie pastry underneath. I also quite like a bit of a soggy bottom now and then – sorry Mary and Paul. I’ll fight you for the gravy-soaked base in a homemade steak pie any day; it’s a country mile better than a chain pub effort with a solitary circle of dry puff balanced on the top.

Here I’ve solved that problem by going down the tarte tatin route, but also by making a pie that’s the same size as a packet of pastry.

My genius is wasted here, but at least my beetroots aren’t.

They made a tasty tart.

Beetroot tart on things{we}make

Things{we}make Balsamic Beetroot Tart with Feta

A large bowl of fresh smallish beetroot
2 Large red onions
2 Cloves of garlic
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar – dark and white*
100g Crumbled feta cheese (a soft goat’s cheese would be excellent too)
Salt and Pepper
1 Pack of all butter puff pastry – ready rolled
Herbs – I used some fresh thyme and oregano.

* I used mainly white balsamic to keep the colour of the beets but a dark aged balsamic would be richer and more glossy.

Wash beetroot, peel any thick skin off with a potato peeler and cut disks of ½” (just over 1cm)
Toss in a bowl with 2 tbsps of olive oil, 2 tbsps of white balsamic, S&P and thyme leaves.
Spread onto a baking sheet and bake at 200°c for around 30 minutes until just softened.
I flipped them over halfway through…just to see how they were doing.
Thinly slice and fry the onions in some oil until soft.
Add the garlic and 2 tablespoons of balsamic to the pan and fry a little more.
Pour a few glugs of oil and balsamic into your tart tin to coat the base.
Arrange the beets on the tray, best side down. Pack them in tight.
Spread the onions and garlic over the top.
Crumble the feta cheese over the onions.
Cover with the rolled out puff pastry making sure you tuck the edges in well.
Jab a few small holes in the pastry to let the steam out,
Bake at 200°c for 30 minutes until golden brown.
Cool for 5 minutes then tip out onto a cooling rack.
Sprinkle with herbs and brush with a little herby oil or balsamic vinegar glaze if you like it sweet.

More posts on Beetroot: Pickle Post and Stripy Beets and Feta Salad…and The Sugar Hit’s Beetroot Tart with Spring Onion Vinaigrette and Vintage Cheddar.

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