Roasted Pepper and Goat Cheese Tart

Savory pies and quiches, vegetarian

As I may have mentioned once before, I often enjoy the process more than the product. It’s not that I don’t like eating the results of my cooking and baking efforts, I do. I love that almost all the food I eat when we are home, is made by me. But sometimes, I pick recipes because they are fun to do and the eating part is just kind of secondary (and necessary for survival). This can be especially the case with dinner. If I spend over an hour making food for us at the end of the day, you can pretty much guarantee that  by the time we sit down to eat, I too tired to really appreciate the meal like I should.

This recipe was a huge exception.

When I got home the other evening and began to prepare this tart I thought I was ahead of the game because I had made the crust earlier in the day. Unfortunately I had not read my recipe thoroughly and there was still some serious work to be done (roasting, peeling and marinating the peppers — something that could have easily been done ahead). I briefly considered changing the recipe, but forged on nonetheless, and when we sad down to eat at 9pm, I was not sorry.

Do this recipe in stages, and you will be even happier than I was with the delicious result.

Roasted Pepper & Goat Cheese Tart, from Nick Malgieri’s The Modern Baker

You can and should make the olive oil crust and the marinated roasted red peppers ahead of time. This will make assembling the tart a breeze and will also give the peppers time to absorb the flavors of the marinade.

Step 1: Olive Oil Crust

makes a single crust for a 10-11 inch tart or pie

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large egg

1 large yolk

2 Tbs water

Combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse several times.

Add the oil, whole egg and yolk, and the water. Pulse repeatedly until the dough forms a shaggy ball. Don’t overmix or the oil could separate from the dough and make it impossible to work with.

Invert the food processor bowl over a floured work surface to turn out the dough. Carefully remove the blade and transfer any remaining dough to the work surface. Press the dough into a rough 1/2 inch thick disk. Roll the dough out using a rolling pin, rotating it as you roll so that you end up with a shape resembling a circle. When it is about 1/8 – 1/4 inch thick transfer the dough to a tart pan and gently press it in to fit. Trim excess. Carefully place the pan on a flat sheet pan and cover with plastic wrap so it will not dry out (I like to only handle the tart pan on a sheet pan once the dough is inside, so that I do not accidentally knock the bottom of the pan out and ruin my work). Keep crust in the fridge until you are ready to fill and bake it. This tart does not need to be pre-baked.

Step 2: Roasting and Marinating the Peppers

4 medium (or two large) sweet bell peppers

Salt

2 Tbs olive oil

1 garlic clove, peeled and thinly sliced

Place an oven rack about 6 inches from the heating element and preheat the broiler. Place the peppers on a sheet pan lined with foil and slide them under the broiler. Let the skins of the peppers char on one side, then use tongs to turn each pepper 90 degrees. Repeat until the peppers are evenly charred on all sides and have collapsed.

Transfer the peppers to a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap (or a plate). Th peppers will steam as they cool and the skins will loosen. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, place them in a colander (do not rinse! They will loose their flavor) and stem, seed and peel them. The peppers should separate into smaller pieces as you peel them. Place the cleaned peppers back into the bowl (cut them into strips if this does not happen while peeling and cleaning).

Place a layer of peppers in a shallow bowl and sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt. Drizzle on the olive oil and scatter a few of the garlic slices over the pepper. Repeat until you have layered all the peppers with the seasonings. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for up to 3 days (the crust should not be refrigerated for more than this).

Step 3: Baking the Tart

prepared crust

marinated roasted peppers

10 oz. mild goat cheese such as Montrachet, crumbled

6 large eggs

salt and pepper

1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley

Set a rack in the lowest level of the oven and preheat to 375˚ F

Sprinkle the prepared tart crust with half of the goat cheese. Cover the cheese with a layer of the marinated peppers (do not include the garlic), overlapping the peppers slightly. Repeat with the remaining cheese and peppers, ending with peppers on top.

Layering the peppers and goat cheese

Whisk the eggs with salt, pepper and chopped parsley and pour into the crust.

Bake the tart until the filling is set and well colored and the crust is baked through ~    30-35 minutes. Cool the tart on a rack before slicing.