Roast Pumpkin and Goats Cheese Rustic Herb Tarts

 

Flavours of roast pumpkin, thyme and creamy marinated goats cheese are a perfect combination for a rustic tart.

The pastry in this recipe is flaky and golden due to the olive oil in the short crust pastry, giving it a crispy texture as well as having an extra herb hit from the fresh thyme leaves added in.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • ¼ medium Jap pumpkin

  • 2 medium red onions finally diced into half moons

  • 1 knob butter for cooking

  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

  • 1 tbsp brown sugar

  • 4 cubes Meredith marinated goat’s cheese

  • 2-3 tsp Sesame seeds

  • 2-3 tsp Nigella seeds

  • 8-10 short thyme sprigs plus extra

  • Olive oil for cooking

For the pastry: 

  • 2 ¼ cup whole meal plain flour

  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 1 whole egg plus 1 egg yolk (reserve the egg white)

  • 75g cold butter

  • 2 tbsp iced water

  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves

  • 1 tsp sea salt

 

METHOD:

  1. To make the pastry add the flour and salt to a large mixing bowl followed by the cold butter cut into cubes. Using your fingers, rub the butter through the flour until it resembles a crumble mixture.

  2. In a separate bowl lightly whisk together the olive oil, egg, egg yolk and the iced water.

  3. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour crumble bowl along with the fresh thyme leaves. Using your hands bring the pastry together into a ball and gently flatten it, be careful not to over work the pastry.

  4. Cover and place in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes.

  5. Pre heat the oven to 180°.

  6. Chop the pumpkin into rough 2x2cm cubes, skin left on. Spread it out onto a large roasting tray, drizzle over with a little olive oil and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the pumpkin is cooked and still has shape.

  7. Heat up a heavy base fry pan on medium heat, add a knob of butter to the pan along with the red onions sliced into very thin half moons. Sauté until they become transparent and soft (5-8 minutes). Add the brown sugar and balsamic vinegar and stir through.  Cook for a further 5 minutes until the vinegar has reduced and the sugar has caramelised. Remove from the heat and set aside.

  8. Take the pastry out of the fridge. Slice it into 4 pieces, work on one piece of pastry at a time and put the remainder back in the fridge to keep chilled while you make each pie.

  9. Roll out the pastry to 4mm thick between two sheets of baking paper on a clean workbench. Trim around the edges if they start to split.

  10. Add ¼ of the caramelized onions to the center of the pastry, spread out leaving a 5-6cm boarder.

  11. Gently transfer the piece of baking paper to a large baking tray.

  12. Add the cooked pumpkin along with one cube of the Meredith goat’s cheese crumbled over the top. Sprinkle over with a couple of sprigs of thyme and some extra leaves.

  13. Using a thin spatula gently lift up the sides of the pastry and fold in on top of the pumpkin, over lapping the pastry as you work around the edge of the pie. Short crust olive oil pastry can be delicate, don’t worry if it crumbles gently press it together with your fingers.

  14. Lightly whisk the left over egg whites and brush on a light layer over the pastry. Sprinkle the sesame seeds and nigella seeds over the top.

  15. Repeat the process for the remainder of the 3 tarts.

  16. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the pastry is lightly golden.

  17. Serve with a side of green leaves and a little spoonful of the marinated oil from the goat’s cheese.

 

Serves: 4

Prep time: 45 minutes plus 30 mins resting time for the pastry.

Cook time: 25-30 minutes

Recipe, styling and photography by Bonnie Coumbe. Visit her site here & Instagram here.