Meatless Monday – Harvest Vegetable Tart

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As you can see, I’m still on a tart kick.  You might say I’m ‘practicing’ for Thanksgiving, but in my defense, when the air gets cold outside, I love to be bundled up inside with a steaming casserole (or hot bowl of soup) and a tart is really just a fancy casserole.  This beauty takes advantage of the exquisite red/orange palate of fall by using colorful root vegetables cut into small leaf shapes using cookie cutters to create an Autumn motif. It happens to be savory and delicious too!

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The original inspiration for this recipe was filled with three kinds of cheese which sounds delicious but I was looking for something less caloric and more savory.  I opted to braise the leftover bits of veggies in olive oil and vegetable broth with shallots and garlic for a flavorful, lower fat tart filling.  I also added coconut milk for creaminess and parmesan for its nutty and salty flavors, but of course, that is optional or there are some great vegan cheeses that could be used.  For the creamy, three cheese recipe, check out Crafty Baking.

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I have had this set of leaf cookie cutters for so long that I don’t remember where I got them but they are still available for sale: 7 Piece Leaf Cookie Cutters. William Sonoma and other gourmet kitchen and restaurant supply stores have a good selection too.  They are worth having in your kitchen arsenal to decorate pies, casseroles or yes, even to make cookies.

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Root vegetables are decidedly homely from the outside, but once you remove their rough exterior, they are positively lovely, an entire array of jewel tones.  I chose my veggies for their variety of colors and flavors. In fact, their brilliant colors show us what a storehouse of nutrients they are.  Since they grow underground, they absorb a tremendous amount of nutrients directly from the soil which includes a variety of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. Click through for 5 Reasons To Eat More Root Vegetables

Parsnips are a funny veggie and actually get a little bit sweet when cooked.  If you don’t like them, substitute another veggie or regular potatoes, especially in the tart filling. Actually, you can use any combination of root vegetables that you like.  Just beware that red and purple veggies may stain wood cutting boards and fingers… heads up.

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TIPS:  I found it helpful to use a potholder to protect my hands when pressing the cookie cutters into the veggies.  Also, I opted to not use the purple carrot ‘scraps’ in the tart filling as it leaches pink liquid turning the whole filling pink and unappetizing. (Yep, found out the hard way)  Other options would be to omit the coconut milk and parmesan and dot with goat cheese or ricotta before topping with the leaves.

 

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HARVEST VEGETABLE TART

  • 1 single pie crust
  • 1 butternut squash*
  • 1-2 purple carrots*
  • 1-2 parsnips*
  • 1 large sweet potato*
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 medium shallots, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp flour
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • 1/2+ cup shredded parmesan (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste

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  • Pre heat oven to 375. Peel and slice squash neck into 1/4 inch rings.

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  • Using a cookie cutter, press firmly into squash. I recommend using a potholder to make pressing down easier on your hands.

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  • Peel and slice remaining root vegetables, using various leaf shapes.  Reserve veggie ‘scraps’.

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  •  Line one or two baking sheets with parchment paper or foil.  Arrange the leaves on the baking sheets. If your cookie cutters have large and small shapes, separate them as they may have different cooking times. Spray or brush with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt. My cookie cutters are small and I had about 70 leaves.

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  • Prebake the leaves until they are tender enough to pierce with a knife tip, but not so tender that they fall apart, about 15 minutes.  Larger leaves may need another 5 minutes. Let cool.

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  • Saute shallots until lightly browned in 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Add garlic.

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  • Gather the veggie scraps and dice. You should have about 6 cups of veggies. Don’t include purple carrot scraps as they will turn everything pink. Add to the shallots along with vegetable broth.  Simmer 10 minutes with the lid off.  Add more broth if necessary but liquid should mostly evaporate.

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  • Veggies should be soft but still somewhat firm.  They will cook again in the tart pan.  Stir in 2 tsp of flour and then add coconut milk, herbs and parmesan (if using).

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  • Roll out pastry dough and place it in a tart pan, pressing gently into the bottom.  Roll the pin over the top to cut the dough to fit the pan.

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  • Pour vegetable filling into pie crust and spread evenly with a spoon.

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  • Arrange the leaf shapes onto the top of the filling, covering any gaps until entire tart is covered.  Spray or brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with more parmesan, if desired.

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  • Bake tart for 35-45 minutes.  Let cool slightly before cutting. Serve with a crisp green salad.  Enjoy!

Harvest Vegetable Tart

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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  • 1 single pie crust
  • 1 butternut squash*
  • 1-2 purple carrots*
  • 1-2 parsnips*
  • 1 large sweet potato*
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 medium shallots, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp flour
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • 1/2+ cup shredded parmesan (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Pre heat oven to 375. Peel and slice squash neck into 1/4 inch rings.
  2. Using a cookie cutter, press firmly into squash.  I recommend using a potholder to make pressing down easier on your hands.
  3. Peel and slice remaining root vegetables, using various leaf shapes.  Reserve veggie ‘scraps’.
  4.  Line one or two baking sheets with parchment paper or foil.  Arrange the leaves on the baking sheets. If your cookie cutters have large and small shapes, separate them as they may have different cooking times. Spray or brush with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt.
  5. Prebake the leaves until they are tender enough to pierce with a knife tip, but not so tender that they fall apart, about 15 minutes.  Larger leaves may need another 5 minutes. Let cool.
  6. Saute shallots until lightly browned in 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Add garlic.
  7. Gather the veggie scraps and dice. You should have about 6 cups of veggies. Don’t include purple carrot scraps as they will turn everything pink. Add to the shallots along with vegetable broth.  Simmer 10 minutes with the lid off.  Add more broth if necessary but liquid should mostly evaporate.
  8. Veggies should be soft but still somewhat firm.  They will cook again in the tart pan.  Stir in 2 tsp of flour and then add coconut milk, herbs and parmesan (if using).
  9. Roll out pastry dough and place it in a tart pan, pressing gently into the bottom.  Roll the pin over the top to cut the dough to fit the pan.
  10. Pour vegetable filling into pie crust and spread evenly with a spoon.
  11. Arrange the leaf shapes onto the top of the filling, covering any gaps until entire tart is covered.  Spray or brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with parmesan, if desired.
  12. Bake tart for 35-45 minutes.  Let cool slightly before cutting. Serve with a crisp green salad.  Enjoy!

 

 

Meatless Monday – Caramelized Onion & Brussels Sprouts Galette

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People seem to have strong feelings about brussels sprouts.  They are either lovers or haters.  Well, this delicious tart might persuade some of the haters to walk on the wild side.  The caramelized onions add that mouthwatering flavor (officially called umami) that is created when an unassuming onion is thinly sliced and slowly sauteed to a silky brown deliciousness.  Its a process that can’t be rushed but is totally worth the time.  I also added gruyere cheese, a hard Swiss cheese with a nutty flavor that blends well with the onions and brussels sprouts.  This is a main course worthy meal and particularly festive for the holidays.

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I had a 2 lb bag of brussels sprouts and was looking for a new way to prepare them. when I spotted this recipe in the new Eating Well magazine.  This is not one of those recipes with a long laundry list of ingredients.  You only need brussels sprouts, onions, garlic, any kind of cheese you like (even vegan), salt, pepper and olive oil.  The pie crust is optional, as this recipe would also make a good baked casserole for those cutting carbs or gluten free.  The original recipe called for layering the ingredients starting with the cheese on the bottom, caramelized onions and then the brussels sprouts on top with a final sprinkling of cheese.  I liked the idea of a caramelized onion ‘crust’, so skipped the layering and loved the results.  I don’t think you can really go wrong.

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You might be wondering what the difference is between a tart, a pie and a galette.  Well, I decided to look it up and the answer is actually not very exciting.  A pie is cooked in a pie pan and a tart is cooked in a tart pan, while a galette (and it’s French relation, Crostata) are free form and cooked on a baking sheet.  I love the rustic look of galettes and they are very forgiving. It almost looks like you wanted it to be misshapen.  You will notice that this recipe calls for two prepared pie crusts which are placed on top of each other and rolled several inches larger to make sure that there is enough dough to fold over.  Of course you can make your own crust if you are feeling industrious. Click through for a recipe for a good White Whole Wheat Pie Crust or a Gluten Free Pie Crust, both from King Arthur Flour.

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Onions are pretty easy to slice with a sharp knife. You can do the same with brussels sprouts too but if you have a mandolin, it’s a lot faster.  Just squeeze as many sprouts as you can in the bowl and slice them at the same time.

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TIPS: This recipe is not hard but it takes about an hour and fifteen minutes to make but you can easily do some of the steps ahead of time.  Caramelize the onions and saute the brussels sprouts and then refrigerate them for up to 1 day.  Or you can bake the galette, let cool and refrigerate for up to 1 day, then reheat at 350°F for about 40 minutes.

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CARAMELIZED ONION & BRUSSELS SPROUTS GALETTE

  • 4 cups thinly sliced onions (2-3 large)
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper, divided
  • 5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced (4 cups)
  • 1½ cups shredded Gruyère, cheddar or sharp Cheddar (6 ounces)
  • 2 7- to 8-ounce prepared pie crusts, thawed if frozen
  • fresh thyme, chopped (optional)
  • Peel and thinly slice onions

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  • Using a sharp knife or a mandolin, slice brussels sprouts.

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  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and browned, 15 to 20 minutes. (deeply caramelized onions might take longer) Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if they start to burn. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Transfer to a large bowl.

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  • Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the pan. Add Brussels sprouts and the remaining ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes.

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  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Stack pie crusts on top of each other so you have a double-thick crust. Roll out on a lightly floured surface into a 13- to 14-inch circle.

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  • Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.

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  • Remove half of the caramelized onions from the bowl and reserve. Add brussels sprouts and one cup of the shredded cheese to the onions and stir to combine.

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  • Spread the brussels mixture on the pastry crust, leaving a 1½-2 inch border around the edge.  If you are making a crustless casserole, oil the baking dish well before adding the brussels mixture.

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  • Spread the remaining onions on top of the brussels mixture 

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  • Top with the rest of the cheese.

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  • Fold the edge of the dough over the filling, pleating every 3 inches.  If you like a shiny crust, spray the edges lightly with olive oil or brush with an egg wash.

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  • Bake until the crust is lightly browned, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

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  • Garnish with fresh thyme, if using.

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Caramelized Onions & Brussels Sprouts Galette

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
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  • 4 cups thinly sliced onions (2-3 large)
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper, divided
  • 5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced (4 cups)
  • 1½ cups shredded Gruyère, cheddar or sharp Cheddar (6 ounces)
  • 2 7- to 8-ounce prepared pie crusts, thawed if frozen
  • fresh thyme, chopped (optional)
  1. Peel and thinly slice onions
  2. Using a sharp knife or a mandolin, slice brussels sprouts.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and browned, 15 to 20 minutes. (deeply caramelized onions might take longer) Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if they start to burn. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the pan. Add Brussels sprouts and the remaining ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  6. Stack pie crusts on top of each other so you have a double-thick crust. Roll out on a lightly floured surface into a 13- to 14-inch circle. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
  7. Remove half of the caramelized onions from the bowl and reserve. Add brussels sprouts and one cup of the shredded cheese to the onions and stir to combine.
  8. Spread the brussels mixture on the pastry crust, leaving a 1½-2 inch border around the edge.   If you are making a crustless casserole, oil the baking dish well before adding the brussels mixture.
  9. Spread the remaining onions on top of the brussels mixture and top with the rest of the cheese.
  10. Fold the edge of the dough over the filling, pleating every 3 inches.  If you like a shiny crust, spray the edges lightly with olive oil or brush with an egg wash.
  11. Bake until the crust is lightly browned, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
  12. Garnish with fresh thyme, if using.

 

12 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Recipes

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Thanksgiving is celebrated as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest, and in that spirit our festivities rightly revolve around food and lots of it.  I have collected a dozen of my favorite vegetarian and vegan dishes which would be perfect for your Thanksgiving dinner as main courses or side dishes. In keeping with the theme, most of them are stuffed or roasted and they are all deliciously vegan or vegetarian (that can easily be made vegan). I have thrown in a couple of my favorite seasonal salads to complement the roasted dishes and add a splash of color to your festive table.

Luckily, most of these recipes are healthy and naturally low fat so won’t add to the ‘winter layer’ we seem to start putting on this time of year. Clicking on any link will take you to the recipe and original blog post. Next week I will post a collection of My Favorite Soups so check back or Follow so you don’t miss it. Lots of sharing buttons below too… Share with your friends!

Happy Thanksgiving!  xoxo J

 

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Roasted Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Brussels Sprouts1

Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Shallots and Toasted Pinenuts

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Mason Jar Veggie Pot Pies (Vegan)

Acorn Slices1

Acorn Squash Rings with Cornbread Stuffing

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers3

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Root Vegetable Tian3

Root Vegetable Tian with Goat Cheese and Crispy Shallots

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Wild Rice, Mushroom and ‘Sausage’ Stuffed Pumpkin

Roasted Acorn Squash1

Roasted Maple Glazed Acorn Squash with Apples and Pecans over Rainbow Quinoa

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Roasted Artichokes Stuffed with Garlic, Parmesan and Quinoa

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Spice Crusted Whole Roasted Cauliflower

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Honey Glazed Winter Squash with Pomegranate

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Portobello Mushrooms Stuffed with Eggplant, Tomatoes and Mozzarella

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Kale Salad with Apples, Pecans and Goat Cheese

Black Rice Dish

Black and Wild Rice with Roasted Squash and Pomegranate

 

 

 

12 Thanksgiving Sides or Vegetarian Mains

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Goodmotherdiet Thanksgiving Sides3

I am on vacation and very far from my kitchen.  Picture my toes with their freshly painted nails digging into the sand, a good book in my hands and warm waves lapping the shore.  Yes, I am at the beach and before packing for my trip, I had to do the dreaded errand most females I know over the age of 13 put off as long as possible – bathing suit shopping.  Oh the horrors! Bottoms that fit – tops that don’t. Everything all tucked in?  Front okay – back, hmmm… I may be a bit curvier than in my youth and just possibly, a bit more  self conscious modest. too.   Luckily, they also sell cute cover ups and big floppy hats…and after a margarita or two, who cares, right? But, I digress…

Since my kitchen is taking a short break,  in lieu of new recipes this week, I have collected a dozen of my favorite vegetarian and vegan dishes which would be perfect for Meatless Monday or as sides for your Thanksgiving dinner or vegetarian (and vegan) main courses. Luckily, most of these recipes are healthy and naturally low fat so won’t add to the ‘winter layer’ we seem to start putting on this time of year. Clicking on any link will take you to the recipe and original blog post. On Wednesday I will post 10 of My Favorite Soups so check back or Follow so you don’t miss it. Lots of sharing buttons below too… Share with your friends! xoxo J

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Roasted Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Black Bean Mango Quinoa Salad4

Black Bean Quinoa Salad

Eggplant Tart2

Vegetable Tart

Acorn Slices1

Acorn Squash Rings with Cornbread Stuffing

Butternut Squash Gratin15

Butternut Squash Leek and Apple Gratin

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers3

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Brussels Sprouts1

Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Shallots and Toasted Pinenuts

Root Vegetable Tian3

Root Vegetable Tian with Goat Cheese and Crispy Shallots

Roasted Acorn Squash1

Roasted Maple Glazed Acorn Squash with Apples and Pecans over Rainbow Quinoa

Tabouleh7

Tabouleh (grain free)

Marinating Portobello Mushrooms

Portobello Mushroom Stuffed with Eggplant and Gorgonzola

Black Rice Dish

Black and Wild Rice with Roasted Squash and Pomegranate