Aubergine upside-down tart recipe
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- Dish type
- Pies and tarts
- Savoury pies and tarts
- Vegetarian pies and tarts
An ideal tart to accompany barbecued beef steaks or fish, this also makes a delicious vegetarian main dish when served with just a salad. This recipe for homemade puff pastry can be used in other recipes, too.
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- 3 aubergines
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin, garam masala, or your choice of spice
- salt and ground black pepper
- 200ml passata
- Puff pastry
- 180g plain flour
- 180g fromage frais
- 80g cold butter, cut into pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
MethodPrep:45min ›Cook:35min ›Extra time:30min chilling › Ready in:1hr50min
- Slice the aubergines into rounds, and place them in a bowl. Sprinkle with the oregano, lemon juice, olive oil and cumin. Season with salt and pepper. Let the aubergine marinate at room temperature, stirring occasionally, while you prepare the puff pastry.
- To make the puff pastry: Stir together the flour, fromage frais, butter and salt to form a soft dough. You will see pieces of butter. Form the dough into a ball, cover with cling film or place in an airtight container and let rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
- Cook the aubergine mixture in a frying pan over medium high heat until lightly golden, about 3 minutes. Arrange the aubergine slices in a tart mould, add any pan juices and pour the passata over the aubergine; set aside.
- Remove the pastry from the refrigerator, and roll into a thick rectangle on a lightly floured surface, trying to keep the edges fairly straight. Fold the pastry into thirds like a business letter. Turn the pastry 90 degrees, and roll into a rectangle again. Again, fold into thirds. Turn the pastry 90 degrees, fold into thirds again, and roll out slightly larger than the tart mould.
- Place the pastry over the vegetables in the tart mould, and trim the edges to fit the mould.
- Bake in the preheated oven until the pastry is golden, about 30 minutes. Turn out onto a serving plate and serve hot or at room temperature.
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Pesto aubergine tart
By now you’re probably thinking “errr… what’s the deal with this guy and aubergines?”. I’ll admit it, I’m sponsored by aubergines. They called me up from their field based HQ and asked if I could write about them endlessly. In return I get sod all, because they’re a bunch of plants, have no currency nor do they possess suitable ID to open a bank account to store or transfer money. They even asked me for exclusivity rights to break up my talks with the poddington peas about a mutual tie-in. Ok, maybe that’s all fantasy. Maybe.
In reality, I just like aubergines, they represent something very summery to me. So on those rare occasions that the weather turns the temperature up slightly, casting sunlight towards us and beaming a gentle, welcoming smile upon our faces, I cook aubergines. I’ve extolled their virtues for quite some time in dishes such as baba ghanoush and recently my chargrilled aubergine bites. They’re just a great vehicle for flavour, an articulated lorry of an ingredient, asking to be loaded up to the roof with your finest produce and consumed.
Today’s recipe has three stages which can be either long winded, or relatively straightforward. First, you have the puff pastry, which you can either make, using my spelt rough puff pastry recipe or buy ready made puff pastry from the shop. Secondly, you need pesto, which can also be made using my traditional Italian pesto recipe, or you can just pick up a jar with your shopping. The aubergines are the only part where there’s no shortcut, but at least you have three levels of speed for the whole recipe, depending on your time or disposition.
A quick note if you go the full homemade route, here’s the most effective way to make it. Start with the pastry first, as this takes longest and requires several rest periods. Then start preparing and cooking the aubergine once the pastry is having it’s first rest in the fridge. In between doing these other two things you can make the pesto, as that’s the easiest part that doesn’t require constant attention, so you can fit it between the other tasks, or just do it when the aubergine is all cooked. By doing it this way you’ll squeeze it all into the shortest time possible. Alternatively, like me, you can make a batch of pesto the night before and have some of it for dinner, then use the rest on the tart the next day.
Last thing, I promise!
When your tart is in the oven, roll the remaining bits of pastry out into a rough square 2-3mm thick, about 15-20cm long, the width just needs to be whatever you can make it from the available pastry. Coat the top with cinnamon and cover it liberally with demerara sugar, using the rolling pin to press it in. Roll the pastry up tightly, like a swiss roll, then slice into 1cm thick rounds. Lay these out on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and squish them down slightly. You can also sprinkle a bit more sugar on at this stage. Cook in the oven for about 15 minutes and you will have some superbly tasty palmier biscuits!
Pesto aubergine tart
Takes 1 hour 30 minutes
Uses a griddle pan and a baking sheet
PDF recipe card to download or print
375g puff pastry , either shop bought, or my spelt rough puff recipe.
120g traditional pesto , either shop bought or my Traditional Italian pesto recipe.
Heat a grill/griddle pan over a medium heat and slice the aubergines into 1cm thick rounds. Brush lightly with olive oil on both sides and cook them for a few minutes each side in batches, so that they have char marks on both sides. When cooked, transfer to a bowl covered with cling film.
Roll the pastry out into a square slightly larger than a dinner plate, to a thickness of about 3-5mm (a £1 coin is 3mm thick). Lightly place a dinner plate on top, upside down, and cut around the edge of the plate, removing the excess pastry and the plate once cut.
Place the round of pastry onto a piece of baking paper, then spread the top with 120g pesto, leaving a 1cm border at the very edge. Place the cooked aubergine slices on top in circles, starting from the outside, moving in. Use the larger slices in the outer ring, saving the smallest for the inner ring.
Slide the tart, whilst still on the baking paper onto the heated baking sheet from the oven. Place in the oven and cook for 30-35 minutes until lightly browned.
Marie Mitchell's aubergine curry, coleslaw and roti
T his is a curry that woke me up at night as I finally figured out the missing ingredient – dark chocolate, which gave it that additional depth I was yearning for. Serve with my sweet and sour coleslaw, specifically crafted for those who are not fans of mayonnaise (I am one of those people – I’m sorry, I just can’t) and, of course, roti – a staple in my home and, in my dream world, all homes. It’s perfect for mopping up any curry juices.
Serves 4 generously
For the aubergine curry
aubergines 3, washed, halved and cut into large chunks (about 2-3cm thick)
garam masala 4 tsp
ground coriander 2 tsp
turmeric 2 tsp
dried chilli flakes 2 tsp
sunflower or rapeseed oil to fry
yellow mustard seeds 1 tbsp
ginger 40g, peeled and finely chopped
limes 1½, zested
onions 2 medium, finely chopped
coconut milk 1 good quality tin
tomatoes 6 medium, washed and quartered
70% dark chocolate 30g
chickpeas 1 tin, drained and rinsed
For the roti (makes six cones)
plain flour 300g, preferably a high-protein one such as bread flour
self-raising flour 150g
sea salt 1½ tsp
demerara sugar 1½ tsp
warm water about 300ml
sunflower oil about 100ml, or 100g ghee or vegan ghee, mixed
sunflower oil for oiling
For the coleslaw
spring onions 2, finely chopped
carrots 2 medium, washed and grated
apple 1, washed, cored and grated
cucumber ½, washed and grated
white wine vinegar 1 tbsp
lime ½, juiced
extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
honey 1 tbsp
salt and pepper to taste
To make the roti, place all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix through.
Make a well in the centre of the flour mix and pour about half of the water in, combining slowly. Keep adding water to bring the flour together to form a dough, aiming for a slightly wet consistency.
Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes or until you have a nice soft, springy ball – you should be able to lightly press your finger in and have it bounce back.
Oil the dough and place in your mixing bowl, then cover with a dry tea towel. Let it rest for half an hour.
Divide into 6 equal balls. I advise weighing the dough, so you can then divide it more evenly.
Do a gentle knead in your hand to reshape each round, holding the ball in the palm and gently pinching the outer edge of the dough with the opposite hand bringing it into the centre of the ball – repeat this to seal the dough. Use the thumb on your opposite hand to seal all the pinches together. Repeat for each ball, oil them again and rest in the mixing bowl for another half an hour.
After they’ve had a second proof, gently flatten each ball, using your hand to lightly twist the dough into a circle.
Roll each portion in an up-and-down motion with a rolling pin, rotating it 180 degrees and repeating to make a round, flat dough. Slice at 12 o’clock to the centre, not all the way through, brush with the oil/ghee mix and then roll in a clockwise direction until it forms a cone.
Lift and hold the dough in one hand, pushing all the sides into the middle with your opposite thumb, turn it upside down on the surface and press the opposite side in to seal it. Repeat for each ball.
Now prove for another half an hour or, alternatively, place the cones in an airtight container and let them rest overnight, ready to cook the following day. They can also be frozen for up to three months. If placing them in a container, make sure not to stack them as this will deform the shape – they can be squeezed next to one another but never on top.
When ready to cook, gently flatten the dough balls into a round and roll them out in the same up-and-down direction, rotating 180 degrees again and repeating to get a circular, flat roti. Don’t roll too hard or too thin as you will lose the lovely layers.
Warm a tawa or frying pan on a medium heat and, when hot, brush with the oil/ghee mixture and place the roti on the pan. Oil the roti again before turning and cook for no more than 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side to get a nice colour.
To make the coleslaw, mix the spring onion, carrot, apple and cucumber in a medium bowl. Add the vinegar, lime juice, olive oil and honey, then stir and taste. It should be both tart and sweet, so if the balance is off, add a little more honey, but fresh is key here. Season to taste.
To make the curry, salt the aubergines and leave for half an hour. In the meantime, toast the spices until fragrant – this shouldn’t take more than a minute or so, so be careful not to burn them.
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a heavy-bottomed pan, add the mustard seeds and fry for 1 minute, add the ginger and lime zest and fry for a minute or two more, or until the mustard seeds start to pop. Stir in the onions and cook until softened, adding a little extra oil if necessary.
Add the toasted spices and a spoonful of the thick coconut milk from the top of the tin and fry for 1 minute. Add the remaining coconut milk, tomatoes, dark chocolate and a tin of water – I use this as an opportunity to get out any remnants of coconut milk. Season, then simmer for 30-40 minutes.
In a large frying pan, heat about 1cm of oil over a medium-to-high heat. Pat the aubergines dry, ready to fry. Fry the aubergines in batches and place on a wire rack over a tray to drain any excess oil.
Once all the aubergines are cooked, add them to the other pan after it’s simmered for 40 minutes as you’ll want to make sure the tomatoes are breaking down. Add the chickpeas. Cook for another 15-20 minutes, so the aubergines can absorb the flavours without breaking apart. Serve with the roti and coleslaw.
Marie Mitchell is a chef, writer and co-founder of Island Social Club
Mardi Michels makes… Tatin de légumes
You might have heard of a famous French dish called tarte Tatin—an upside-down caramelised apple tart. Here we’re using the same idea to make a savoury tart inspired by a dish I enjoyed at the Auberge de Fourcès in Southwest France. It’s best to make this in the summer when tomatoes are at their ripest, but even if you make it when tomatoes are not in season, roasting them gives a lot of flavor without much effort. Pair it with a green salad for a perfect light lunch! In this recipe, you can use store-bought pastry which really makes it a great option for a quick lunch or dinner with a bit of “wow” factor!
- 3 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
- 1 small aubergine, thinly sliced
- 2 medium courgettes, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Herbes de Provence or dried thyme
- Flaky sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 roll (approx 8oz, 225g) store-bought puff pastry, thawed but chilled
1 Preheat the oven to 400˚F (200˚C). Line two baking trays with parchment paper.
2 Place the tomato, aubergine and courgette slices in one layer on the baking trays. Drizzle the olive oil over the vegetables and season with the Herbes de Provence or thyme, salt and pepper.
3 Roast the vegetables for about 20 minutes. They will be starting to soften but still a little firm. Remove the vegetables from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
4 Lightly oil a nonstick 10-inch (25 cm) tart pan, preferably one with a fixed bottom, and line a third baking tray with parchment paper.
5 Carefully remove the vegetables from the baking trays and place them evenly and snugly into the tart pan. Let them overlap, because they will shrink when they cook. You can choose to make a pattern or layer them randomly in the pan. Just make sure the entire bottom of the pan is covered.
6 Unroll the pastry and cover the vegetables. Trim if necessary and carefully tuck the edges of the pastry in under the vegetables. Use a small, sharp knife to poke a few holes in the pastry to allow the steam to escape.
7 Place the tart pan on the prepared baking tray and bake for 30 minutes. The pastry will have browned a little on top.
8 Remove the tart from the oven and allow it to cool for a few minutes on a wire rack. Place a plate larger than the tart pan over the top of the pan. Carefully flip the pan over, gripping the sides of the plate and the tart pan with a tea towel and both hands. Be fast but careful as you flip. If some of your vegetables have stuck to the bottom of the pan, remove them now and replace them on top of the tart (don’t worry, it’s normal for a few pieces to stick).
9 Serve warm or at room temperature. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge and warmed in a low oven (300˚F/ 150˚C) for about 15 minutes.
About the author
Mardi Michels is the author of In the French kitchen with kids (Appetite by Random House, 2018) and the popular blog eatlivetravelwrite.com. She lives in Toronto, Canada, where she teaches French and cooking at the elementary school level and adult cooking and baking classes. She is a full-time Francophile who spends as much time in France (the Southwest) as possible!
Want more mouth-watering recipes? Order this wonderful book by clicking the link below!
This Caramelized Leek Tart Is the Easiest, Most Stunning Dish You Will Make This Spring
It’s that time of the year when people freak out over all the spring things: the sugar snap and English peas, fava beans, asparagus. I even once watched two people get into an actual fight about the last $6 bunch of ramps at the farmers market. But the lowly leek? When’s the last time anyone lost their shit over them? Well this spring veg is also peaking right now, and you’d be wise to make good use of them with this brand new Upside-Down Caramelized Leek Tart.
The dish is a savory tarte tatin inspired by the flavors of classic leeks in vinaigrette. “It’s one of my very favorite ways to eat leeks,” says senior associate food editor Molly Baz, who developed the recipe. For those of you who have yet to discover the magic that is alliums roasted in bracingly acidic vinegar until golden and soft, get on it. But it gets better, because this recipe also employs (store bought!) flaky, buttery puff pastry, which makes it over-the-top delicious, visually stunning, and really freakin’ easy.
Photo by Chelsie Craig, Food Styling by Pearl Jones
You start by par-roasting your cleaned, trimmed leeks in the oven to get them part of the way cooked. “From there, it all happens in one pan, building from the bottom up,” says Molly. Simply simmer some white wine (or red or sherry) vinegar in a cast iron skillet. Then add a couple of tablespoons of butter, thyme leaves, and a teaspoon of sugar, just to coax along the caramelization. After this has cooled a bit, you lay down the roasted leeks in neat rows, keeping in mind that however they’re organized on the bottom of your pan is how they will look on the top of your tart. “You don’t have to be crazy about it,” Molly says of the arrangement. “If there’s a gap, just cut a little piece of leek and fill it in.” Brush the rounded side of the leeks with some mustard for a slightly spicy bite and sprinkle some grated parm over the top, which adds “a fatty-salty vibe without turning it into an actually cheesy tart.”
The puff gets rolled out until it’s wide enough to cover the circumference of your pan and trimmed into a circle. I actually laid my dough on top of the pan and then imperfectly snipped off the corners with kitchen scissors. You tuck the sides underneath anyway, so it doesn’t need to be exact. The pastry will, well, puff and surround your leeks once you slide it all into the oven.
Forty minutes later, all you have to do is flip it over onto a plate, which sounds harder than it is. “Make sure you have a surface that is larger than your pan,” says Molly, “and do it in one, swift, confident movement. If any leeks stick to the bottom of the pan, it’s not a big deal. Just peel them off and lay them back on top of the tart. No one will ever know.”
What they will know is that you just served them a truly springy, visually impressive, melt-in-your mouth buttery-and-bright-all-at-the-same-time tart. They might even freak out about it.
Aubergine upside-down tart recipe - Recipes
Its the end of our season for peppers & aubergines, although there are still some in the markets. It's time to find something new to do with them other than preserving them or making ratatouille! Its also leek season & boy are they stunners, almost as tall as me & very fragrant. I'm trying to hone my pastry making skills so I decided to make a tart using the leeks & the end of season veg. This tart was a very tasty success, after a very strange looking first effort.
Add whatever vegetables are in season at the time, I have added bacon & ham but it makes a stunning vegetarian pie & suits either lunch or dinner. Experiment with tastes & enjoy.
SHORT CRUST PASTRY
220g Plain Flour
55g Butter, cold
55g Lard, cold
3tbsp COLD Water aprox
In a large bowl sift flour with salt, cut the butter & lard into knobs & rub in with tips of fingers until like soft breadcrumbs. Add enough COLD water to form pastry into a soft dough ball. Turn onto floured surface & form into a flat round, cover in foil or cling film & rest in fridge for 30 minuets or more. Roll out the pastry on the floured surface till it is bigger than the tart or pie pan. butter or grease the pan & drape the pastry in. Fit it to your pan & fork holes on the bottom. Put in the fridge to chill while you heat the oven to 230c (210c fan). When ready blind bake the pastry case I line the base with foil & if I have them fill with beans, but without beans has been fine. Bake for 10 minuets then remove foil & bake a further 5 mins. Reduce oven temp to 180c (160c fan)
2 Leeks Sliced
1 large or 2 small Aubergines de seeded & sliced
1 Onion sliced
3 cloves Garlic crushed & chopped
2 Roasted Peppers sliced. You can use un roasted 1 red 1 green or other colours
2/3 large Mushrooms pealed & sliced
4 rashers streaky Bacon chopped. Leave out to make a vegetarian tart.
3/4 slices Ham chopped. Optional
3 Eggs lightly beaten
12 fl oz Milk full or semi skimmed (not skimmed)
5 oz hard Cheese finely grated
Feta cheese to crumble over. Optional
1 tbsp Flour
Ground black Pepper
pinch Ground rock/sea Salt
Spray a large pan with oil or frylight, Brown leeks & aubergine then add onion, garlic, peppers & mushrooms, Spray with more oil if needed. Stir till softened & browned. Add the bacon & ham, stir well, but don't cook too much.
While this is cooking beat eggs & milk with some salt & pepper in large jug or bowl. Grate cheese on very fine & mix with the flour.
When everything is ready. Combine the cheese into the milk & add the vegetables. Tip into the pastry case & level. This is where you can crumble some Cirene/feta if you like.
Bake in center of oven for 35 - 40 mins
Stand for 5 mins or so to allow it to set before serving.
Trim the green stalks from the aubergines and slice them in half lengthways.
Then, if you have a grapefruit knife use that, or otherwise use a teaspoon, to get out the pulpy centres of the aubergines, leaving a shell not less than ¼ in (5 mm) thick. Sprinkle the shells liberally with salt and leave upside down to drain for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, chop the pulp. Now heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a saucepan and gently fry the onion until softened. Stir in the chopped aubergine pulp, crushed garlic and half the basil. Season with salt and pepper and cook over a low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring now and then.
After this, stir in the chopped anchovies.
Preheat the oven to gas mark 4, 350°F (180°C) Next, wipe the aubergine shells with kitchen paper and arrange them in the roasting tin or baking dish. Spoon the onion mixture into the shells, then arrange alternate slices of cheese and tomato on top of each aubergine half and sprinkle with the chopped capers. Finally, sprinkle with the remaining basil and dribble a little more olive oil over each.
Season and bake, uncovered, in the top of the oven for 40 minutes. Serve garnished with a sprig of fresh basil.
|For the tart:|
|200g (7oz)||bought puff pastry, thawed if frozen|
|8||large Cox’s apples, peeled, halved and cored with a melon baller|
|10g (¼oz)||unsalted butter, melted|
|1 tbsp||caster sugar|
|For the caramel:|
|50ml (2fl oz)||water|
|100g (4oz)||caster sugar|
|25g (1oz)||unsalted butter|
Aubergine upside-down tart recipe - Recipes
Oh, oh oh, quick add a link and enter it into this months No Croutons Required as a salad dish. It is just right and I am so lacking in entries :(
Have done. thanks for the nudge!
Simple but effective. Great!
My partner has decided that we should eat less meat for some reason (hey, who am I to argue with her!) and this looks great! Its the first thing I found on your site so will be certain to look through the rest of the recipes. Not sure if its something you have thought about it, but would be really handy if you could add a "printer version" of the recipes :)
Thanks James. If you look at the bottom of each recipe (just under the You Might Also Like feature) you'll find a little green print button, which should make a printer-friendly version of each recipe.
This looks awesome! I'll have to remember this for later, as I'm always ending up with half jars of artichoke hearts and roasted peppers and such.
Congrats on your NCR win. This does look rather appealing and quick to make too.
Thanks Claire and Shaheen :-)
Thanks very much for your comment. I love hearing your opinions, so please rest assured that genuine comments and competition entries will be visible after approval. This may take 24-48 hours, depending on how hectic my work/home life is at the time!
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a non-stick frying pan. When the oil is hot, throw in the sausages and fry until they form a dark crust all over. Pour in the wine and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes or so. Turn the heat down and pour in about 100ml boiling water. Simmer until there is hardly any liquid left - another 4 or 5 minutes.
Heat the remaining oil in a sauté pan, throw in the sliced onion and a couple of pinches of salt. Sauté until the onion is golden, not brown, stirring it frequently for 10–15 minutes.
While the onion is cooking, slice the sausages in half lengthwise and arrange them in a 20cm round tart tin in a ring, cutting the half-sausages to fit in the shape of the tin. If there is any juice left in the sausage pan add it to the onion. Taste the onion and check for salt, adding pepper if you want. Now spoon it all around the sausages.
Roll out the pastry thinly on a floured board. Cut it in a round about 1cm wider than the tin. Roll the pastry round the rolling pin and then unroll it over the sausages and onion in the tin. Tuck in the edges of the pastry all around and then place the tin in the oven. Bake for 25–30 minutes until the pastry is golden.
To unmould, place a large round dish over the top of the tin. Carefully turn the dish over and let the tart drop onto it.