Tag Archives: cucumber

Rainbow Vegetable Puff Pastry Tart

Vegetarian tarts are some of my favourite savoury bakes to make. It’s very easy to create a delicious vegetarian meal without feeling as if you’re missing the meat using puff pastry. And this Rainbow Vegetable Tart is an easy and delicious vegetarian puff pastry tart that can be ready in just 45 minutes!

There’s no shame in using ready made puff pastry, especially when it’s so readily available, cheap and good quality from many supermarkets. The tart has flaky and delicate buttery puff pastry with a layer of smooth cream cheese and lots of good vegetables which are tasty and texturally all different; the cucumber provides a soft mellow base, the carrots add slight sweetness as well as a tiny amount of crunch, the tomato adds moisture and sweetness as it roasts on the surface and the red onions cook down and become crisp. The tart is finished off with melted brie and gorgonzola.


1 x 375g block of shop bought puff pastry

75g full fat cream cheese

Ground black pepper

20ml lemon juice

Pinch of salt

½ a cucumber, cut into long ribbons using a vegetable peeler, seeds removed

½ a carrot, cut into long ribbons using a vegetable peeler

3 tomatoes, sliced

½ a red onion, sliced thinly

50g brie, cubed

25g gorgonzola, cubed

Beaten egg, to glaze


Preheat the oven to 200˚C. Cut a piece of parchment to fit a square baking tray.

Roll out the puff pastry into a square on a lightly floured surface measuring 23cm by 23cm. Use a knife to lightly score a mark 2cm in from each side.

In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese with the black pepper, salt and lemon juice until it has a spreadable consistency. Spread the cream cheese on top of the puff pastry up to the marked edge.

Arrange the cucumber and carrot ribbons over the pastry so that the cream cheese is concealed, again reaching up to the border. Place 16 tomato slices on the tart in a 4×4 grid as in the picture and scatter over the thinly sliced red onions and the brie and gorgonzola. Finish with a crack of black pepper and brush the top of the puff pastry with egg wash.

Bake the tart for around 25 minutes or until the pastry is well-risen, golden and crisp and cooked all the way through to the base. Leave to cool on the tray for 5 minutes before slicing into 4 pieces and serving hot with a lightly dressed side salad.

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Gochujang Fried Rice

The Korean dish, bibimbap, which literally translates as mixed rice, was the inspiration for this recipe, my Gochujang Fried Rice. With pieces of fried bacon, scrambled egg, spring onions, cucumber, sweetcorn and gochujang paste, which is Korean fermented chilli paste, this fried rice dish is ready in less than 30 minutes and is so simple to cook and prepare!

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I’m yet to fully master cooking rice on an electric hob and that’s something I definitely need to work on, however I am beginning to master the art of cooking quickly which is what I’ll need after a tiring day of lectures and workshops!

And if you’ve never tried gochujang, it’s a spicy almost garlicky chilli paste which lends lots of flavour to anything, whether that’s meat, vegetables or my fried rice. The flavour of gochujang is complex and I’ve never tasted anything like it however I do know that it tastes delicious! If you don’t have an Asian supermarket where you can buy it, you can find gochujang in most normal supermarkets these days.

If you’re worried about not using the whole tub, here are some of my other gochujang recipes you can try!

Korean Pork Belly with Japchae Noodles

Romaine Lettuce Kimchi


75g long grain rice

2 rashers of bacon

1 egg

1 spring onion, chopped into discs

¼ of a cucumber, cut into 2 inch matchsticks

2 tbsp gochujang paste

A handful of tinned sweetcorn


Wash the rice until the water runs clear and then place into a saucepan with enough water such that when your middle finger touches the surface of the rice, it comes up to the first ridge. Place the pan on a high heat and bring to the boil.

Once the water has boiled, turn the heat down as small as possible and leave on the heat with a lid on for a further 15 minutes or so. The rice is done when there are dimples in the surface and fluff it up with a fork only.

In a dry wok, fry the bacon rashers until they are cooked through. Any burnt pieces will add to the flavour so don’t wash the wok in between. Place it onto a chopping board and chop it into small pieces.

Add the egg into the wok and scramble it and pour it out onto the chopping board.

Into the wok, fry the spring onions with the cucumber until slightly softened. Add in the gochujang paste, the sweetcorn and the cooked bacon and egg and stir fry with a wooden spatula until everything is covered with gochujang.

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Add the warm rice in all at once and continue to toss around until the rice has turned a golden colour. Transfer to a bowl, finish with a few more slivers of spring onion and eat immediately.