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Friday, 16 November 2007

Festive Filo Tarts

This month's challenge for Waiter there's something in my... topless tart, being hosted by Jeanne at Cook Sister! made me very happy.
I love tarts of all shapes and sizes, sweet, savoury, hot or cold. I was even happier when I picked up a copy of the Christmas issue of BBC's Good Food Vegetarian magazine, because on the cover was a veggie tart that would even make a meat lover drool.

A crisp filo tart case filled with soft, golden butternut squash. Add crunchy nuts and some sweet dried cranberries - topped off with melty, tangy blue cheese. Mmmmmm!

In the magazine they used a 20cm fluted tart tin, but I used a large, 4 hole Yorkshire pudding tin to make individual ones. You can use any size tart tins - just cut the filo into squares that are a little bigger than the tins. I substituted pecans instead of walnuts and added a sprinkle of chilli flakes on the top. They were fabulous as a starter, with a scattering of salad leaves.

Festive Filo Tart  2064

Festive Filo Tarts
Adapted from a Rachel Allen recipe
in the
BBC Vegetarian Christmas Magazine 07

200 g filo pastry
melted butter, for brushing

1 small butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into 2cm cubes
3 tablespoons olive oil

50 g pecans, toasted
50 g dried cranberries
chilli flakes to your taste
100 g vegetarian blue cheese

To make the filo tarts, heat the oven to 160ºC and cut the pastry into squares that are slightly bigger than the tart tins. Brush each sheet with melted butter and layer in the tin, about 5/6 squares per tart, each sheet at an angle to the previous one, so you have a starry shape with pointy edges. Bake for 10-20 minutes, depending on the size you are making, or until golden. Set aside.

Heat the oven to 200ºC. Spread the cubes of butternut squash on a baking tray, toss with the olive oil and a little salt and pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes or until soft. Remove from tray and cool.

The two steps above can be done a couple of hours ahead.

To finish the tarts, heat the oven to 160ºC. Place the roasted squash in the filo cases and sprinkle with the pecans, dried cranberries and a few chilli flakes. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until warm and then crumble the cheese over the top. Return to the oven for about 5 minutes, until the cheese has melted. Serve warm.

(Printable Recipe)

Festive Filo Tart 2071

Vegetarian Thanksgiving logo

Edited November 2008: This dish is on it's way to Mansi, over at the Fun and Food Cafe - she's hosting a Vegetarian Thanksgiving Recipe Carnival. I am really looking forward to the entries, as every night I cook for the vegetarians in my house and am in need of a few new ideas!


This content belongs to Nicisme at Cherrapeno. All writing and photography copyright N Fowers © 2007-2008 unless otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.


Anonymous said...

Gorgeous and VERY festive! If there were any colors to epitomize Thanksgiving/autumn...that dish incorporates them all.

SteamyKitchen said...

Now that is an amazing, original appetizer.


Anonymous said...

Delicious! Sound like a great easy treat and a good way to use up extra squash from all the pumpkin pies during the holidays. Being a little adverse to blue cheese, myself though, I bet Brie would be tasty, or maybe a good sheep's cheese. Thanks for the inspiration!

Rasa Malaysia said...

Your filo tarts look oh-so-yummy, I have been thinking about buying the frozen filo shells and make some tarts, but haven't done so...your post just remotivated me again.

Marie Rayner said...

Those look fabulous Nic! Well done!!

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

Those look good! Beautiful colours and flavours.
I haven't managed to spot a copy of the Good Food Christmas Vegetarian magazine yet! But I will keep looking. Is it totally bursting with yummy things?

M'nMs said...

Nice nice nice...especially since I am vegetarian ;)
The picture is making me the walnut substition - I too often end up using pecans instead of walnuts.

Maggie said...

Wonderful colours and flavour combinations. They look amazing.

Nic said...

Hillary - thanks, certainly lovely colours in this dish.
Steamy - thank you, and a large one would be ideal for a main course.
Bri - I bet Brie would be really good too!
Rasa - filo is so easy to use, but frozen ones are great to have on hand!
Thanks Marie!
Holler - there are a couple of good recipes but I think most of these magazines are the same each year, not many original recipes these days!
M&Ms - I prefer pecans for some reason, but I bet other nuts would be good or some pine nuts on top.
Margaret - thanks, lots of flavours and great textures too.

Jeanne said...

OMG, don't those look fantastic?? I adore the sound of all the ingredients together but the way they look is even better - like little jewelled tarts! It would be a shame to cover these beauties up - it's topless all the way for them :) Thanks very much for taking part this month.

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

I'll bet they taste as good as they look!

Anh said...

Totally delicious! I love how you combined nuts, cheese and pastries together! :)

Nic said...

Thanks jeanne and thanks for being a great host!
They aren't bad Bellini Valli! I Like your name change!
Welcome Anh, thanks so much for visiting!

ThreeTastes said...

Gorgeous fall colors and flavors — brava!

desie said...

looks absolutely gorgeous, perfect colours for the holiday season. the combination of flavours sounds delicious.

Africantapestry and Myfrenchkitchen said...

What beautifully elegant philo tarts and to top it off...they look delicious.

Julie said...

Boy those are pretty and I have no doubt that they are absolutely delicious. I love blue cheese with just about everything but it seems to be at it's absolute best when paired with fruit.

Team Gingerbread said...

Yummy... those look like a winner to me.