What I love about summer are the long days, warm afternoons, late swims, and light dinners enjoyed outdoors.
But I have to say that we’re not doing the last two so much this year due to the extreme variations in weather. One day it’s hot, friggin hot, at around 37c and it’s an unbearable heat that makes it difficult to enjoy the outdoors. It is usually followed by a violet storm reeking havoc! The next day, it’s down to 19c and were putting on long sleeves! What’s the story?
Consequently, each storm brings with it a power shortage that seems to last late into the night and I find I’m back in the 18 century, reading by candle light. Then the cool days makes it difficult to keep the kiddies in singlets and shorts. Both have had a few colds (which is rare for this time of the year) and I am confident it’s due to the dramatic rise & drops in temperature. Ok, Ok I’ll stop complaining – we don’t have the snow storms that America has, or the sticky heat of Singapore!
One thing that does not work well in extreme hot weather but perfect for those cooler days is preparing pastry for a savoury tart, in particular, Spinach, Feta & Roast Tomato Tart!
I suppose that is the consolation prize for the milder, rainy days of summer – to comfortably bake in the kitchen. I love it! It definitely makes preparing shortcrust pastry a breeze as the butter in the pastry holds for longer periods while being handled. Additionally, the heat from the oven is tolerable!
This tart is conveniently simple to prepare and deliciously light to eat, no matter what the weather! The shortcrust pastry is super easy to make in a food processor and needs minimal handling and resting time in the refrigerator. It’s crisp buttery bite adds a lovely texture to the quiche filling of spinach, ricotta, and feta with the roasted tomatoes served on top.
The filling is deliciously satisfying and a dairy lovers dream with the combination of three cheeses – feta, ricotta, and parmesan. The addition of the baby spinach and roasted tomatoes marries perfectly. It’s a lovely way to be eating fresh produce that the whole family will enjoy.
You could serve the tart with a light salad of iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced red onion & cucumbers drizzled with Extra virgin olive oil & red wine vinegar. Enjoy!
A deliciously light and flavoursome savoury tart - perfect for a summer midweek dinner!
15 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
200g Plain flour
pinch sea salt
100g Butter, unsalted, cut into cubes
280g Baby Spinach
1 tblsp Olive oil
1 Brown onion, small size, finely chopped
1 Garlic clove, finely chopped
3 Eggs, lightly beaten
150g Ricotta, fresh & firm, crumbled
25g or 1/3 cup Parmesan, grated
100g Feta, crumbled
100g Vine ripened Cherry Tomatoes
- In a food processor, pulse together the plain flour, sea salt & butter until forms breadcrumbs.
- While pulsing, add 2-3 tblsp of iced water and stop once it starts for form a ball of dough.
- Turn it out onto a bench and form into a round disc. Wrap in clingwrap and allow to rest in refrigerator for 30mins.
- Preheat oven to 180c. Grease a 11cm x 33cm fluted tart tin with a removable base.
- Roll our shortcrust pastry to fit and line the fluted tart tin. Cover the pastry with baking paper and fill with pastry weights or rice. Bake for 15 mins. Remove baking paper with weights and place back into the oven for a further 3 to 5 mins.
- Meanwhile, reserve 60g of the baby spinach. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium to high heat and cook the onion for 3 or until the onion softens. Then add in the garlic, stirring, and cook for a further 2 mins.
- Add remaining spinach and cook, stirring for 2 mins or until just wilted. Transfer to a large bowl. Cool for 5 mins.
- Stir in the egg, ricotta, parmesan, and half of the feta.
- Spoon the mixture into the pastry case. Sprinkle with remaining feta. Bake for 25-30mins or until filling is set and golden.
- While the tart is baking, place the vine cherry tomatoes on a baking tray and spray with olive oil. Roast in the oven with the tart for the last 15 mins of baking or until the tomatoes are soft.
- Arrange the tomatoes on the tart and top with reserved spinach.