Beetroot and Feta Tart

Beetroot and Feta Tart

Beetroot and Feta Tart

I know not everyone is a fan of beetroot, however I love it.  I can't resist the colour and the earthy flavour it brings to dishes, and as a part-time vegetarian this is one of the dishes I love to make.  Packed with lots of spritely flavours the feta balances it all out.  Even if you are not a beetroot junkie, try this one out – you may just like it!

I use purchased puff pastry for these tarts – a double layer in each little tartlet tin – simply because it is easier and the folks who make the pastry do a better job than I do.  If you want to make you own puff please do.  Also, I have stipulated Raspberry vinegar in this dish as it has an affinity with beetroot.   If you do not have some – pop to the shops now... or just use white wine vinegar.
These tarts are well suited to being made into small tartlets, for individual serves, or it can also be made into a single large tart.  If making a single large tart, add an extra egg.

2Beetroot and Feta Tart sheets puff pastry or make your own
1 kg baby beets, skinned and halved
1 large zucchini, chopped into crescents
2cm piece of fresh ginger
5 spring onions, roughly chopped
2 limes, halved
1 clove of garlic, halved, skin on
¼ cup Raspberry vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
1 egg
100 grams feta cheese
3 tablespoons cottage cheese or sour cream for a more unctuous filling
¼ cup milk or cream
Generous pinch of nutmeg
3 tablespoons finely chopped dill
Few sage leaves, one finely chopped
Small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
Pinch of sugar

Preheat oven to 200°C

Place the beetroot, zucchini, spring onions, whole sage leaves, limes, ginger and garlic in a roasting tray.  Grind over a generous amount of salt and pepper, nutmeg a pinch of sugar.  Pour in the raspberry vinegar and olive oil and place in a hot oven to roast for 20 minutes.
The lime, ginger, vinegar and sugar will caramelise in the oven and create a thick juice around the beets and prevent them from becoming overly sweet.
Once the beets are tender, remove them from the oven and set aside to cool.

In a small bowl, combine the egg, milk, cottage cheese and feta with the finely chopped sage, parsley and dill.  Whisk together well, allowing some nice big chunks of feta.
Cut your pastry to size and line the tartlets, then blind bake until crisp and golden.
Remove the tart shells from the oven and allow them to cool for a few minutes before adding a generous portion of vegetable filling to each one.
Spoon in the feta and egg mix, being careful not to overfill the tarts.
Bake in a hot oven for about 15 minutes – keep an eye on them though as the cheese can brown too quickly.

Serve with a tossed green salad and a fruity wine.  Lovely served warm or cold and makes a lovely lunch to share with friends.