vegetables

As far as summer produce is concerned, this is the honeymoon period. We’ve just started getting zucchini, eggplant and peppers in our CSAs, and we’re lovingly sautéeing them simply, throwing them into salads and basically gorging ourselves on every last veggie. But soon, memories of last August will start creeping in; soon, you’ll have no idea what to do with the summer squash invading your garden and the ripe tomatoes that are going to go bad at any moment. And that’s when this Roasted Summer Vegetable Tart re-enters your life, to remind you why you fell in love in the first place.

Summer vegetables are great for roasting; like with winter vegetables, roasting brings out their natural sweetness and caramelization. If you don’t want to turn on the oven in the heat, grilling is another option, though you’ll have to go for larger pieces, to keep the slices of veggie from falling through the cracks.

This tart is very versatile. You can use whatever veggies you have lying around, either a combination or one type at a time. You can even top the crust with leftover ratatouille, or use the recipe in winter with winter vegetables. One thing is sure: you’re certain to love it.

Roasted Summer Vegetable Tart

Serves 6 as an appetizer or 4 as a main

Ingredients

1 small zucchini
1 eggplant 
1 tablespoon salt
2 tomatoes
1 red pepper
1 head of garlic
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1 teaspoon (separated)

4-5 sheets organic phyllo dough (or you can make your own)
1 tablespoon butter, melted
2 ounces fresh goat cheese
1/2 Tablespoon herbes de Provence

Method

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. 

Prep your vegetables. Dice the zucchini and eggplant into 1×1 inch cubes. Place them in a colander and toss them with the salt. Place over the sink to drain while you prep the other vegetables.

Cube the tomatoes and place in a bowl. Cut the red pepper in half and remove the seeds. Slice each of the halves widthwise into very thin strips. Add to the bowl with the tomatoes.

Slice the top off of the whole head of garlic. Place on a piece of aluminum foil, and bring the sides up to surround it. Pour the teaspoon of olive oil on the head of garlic, and wrap the aluminum foil around the top so that the entire head of garlic is wrapped in foil.

Shake the excess moisture from the zucchini and eggplant, and transfer them from the colander to a clean dishcloth. Pat dry. Add the zucchini and eggplant to the bowl containing the tomatoes and pepper. Add the tablespoon of olive oil and toss to coat.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, and spread the vegetables evenly over it. Place the foil-wrapped head of garlic in the pan. Roast for 45 minutes total, tossing once, until the vegetables are caramelized.

Remove the vegetables and decrease the heat to 350 degrees. Carefully unwrap the head of garlic and allow it to cool.

Using a pastry brush, lightly grease the bottom of a tart pan with some of the melted butter. Unwrap the phyllo and cover with a damp towel. Place one sheet of phyllo in the bottom of the tart pan, and brush with butter. Add another sheet of dough, turned 90 degrees so that the two sheets together form a sort of eight-pointed star. Brush the sheet with butter. Continue until all of the sheets are used, and brush the last sheet with butter.

Squeeze the roasted garlic into a bowl, and mash it with a fork until it becomes a paste. Using a spoon, spread a thin layer over the top of the last sheet of phyllo. Spread the roasted vegetables over the top, and drop small amounts of goat cheese evenly over the vegetables. Sprinkle with the herbes de Provence.

Bake in the oven until the edges of the phyllo are golden brown and the cheese has slightly melted, about 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Image: ilovebutter