Ratatouille Tart

Ratatioulle Tart

This lovely tart is a simplified version of my Ratatouille Pie recipe, featured in British Columbia From Scratch.  It’s a great company dish because it can be made well in advance and heated just before serving.

To keep the pastry crisp, I pre-bake the pie shell before adding the filling. I dust the pastry shell with Parmesan cheese just before baking the empty pie shell. This forms a light seal and prevents the filling from seeping through.

If you’re not in the mood for making pastry, the ratatouille filling is delicious tossed with pasta, gnocchi, rice, or baked potatoes.

This recipe can be easily halved.

makes two (10 1/2-inch) tarts

One recipe flaky pastry pie dough, baked in a fluted pan, and cooled (recipe below)

Tart Filling
1 Tbsp olive oil, plus more as necessary
1 large onion, diced
1 large zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, then into 1/4-inch slices
1 large red pepper, diced
1/4 tsp kosher salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
one 14-oz can good quality plum tomatoes
one 6-oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
18 Kalamata olives, pits removed and coarsely chopped
1 tsp hot sauce, such as Sriracha
3 Tbsp freshly chopped parsley
1 Tbsp freshly chopped basil

Cheese Filling
1 cup ricotta cheese, strained in a sieve for about 30 minutes, to remove any excess water
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, slightly beaten

Optional Topping
14 thin slices zucchini, about 1 large zucchini
14 thin slices tomato, about 2 large firm tomatoes

Special Equipment
two 10 1/2-inch tart pans with removable bottoms

One recipe flaky pastry pie dough, baked in two fluted pans, and cooled (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Ratatouille Filling
Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large saucepan, add the onions, and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes until translucent. Add the zucchini, red peppers, and salt; cook until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir for about half a minute until aromatic, then add the tomatoes, breaking them up with a wooden spoon. Add the artichokes, pitted olives, hot sauce, and herbs. Simmer uncovered over medium heat, until the liquid has completely evaporated and the mixture has thickened, about 15–20 minutes. (A watery mixture will seep through the pastry.) Taste and season with additional salt if desired. Set aside to cool completely.

Cheese Filling
Combine the strained ricotta, feta, Parmesan, and egg in a medium bowl and mix well.

Spread the cheese mixture evenly over the base of the pastry-lined tart pan. Spread the cooled ratatouille filling over the cheese mixture.

Optional Topping
If desired, place alternate slices of zucchini and tomato around the perimeter of each tart. Brush the sliced tomatoes and zucchini with a little oil and sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt.

Place the tarts on a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for about 30 – 40 minutes.

Flaky Pastry Dough
makes 1 double-crust pie or two tarts

2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
½ pound lard or vegetable shortening
1 egg, room temperature
1 Tbsp white vinegar
1 cup of ice cold water
parchment or waxed paper
plastic wrap
⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Place the flour and salt in a large bowl and mix to combine. Cut the lard or shortening into 1  – 2 inch pieces and add it to the flour mixture. Cut the fat into the flour with a pastry blender or two knives until the mixture is crumbly with some larger pieces among the (mostly) finer particles.

In a measuring jug with a spout, combine the egg, vinegar, and enough ice water to equal 1 cup; mix with a fork. Gradually pour about half the liquid into the flour and mix with a fork, adding only enough additional water to make the dough cling together in an untidy mass. You won’t use all the water; you’ll have anywhere from ¼  – ½ cup leftover.

When the dough becomes too difficult to mix with a fork, transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and shape into a disk about 1” thick. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Transfer the chilled dough to a sheet of flour-dusted parchment. Roll the dough to about ⅛” thick, rolling from the centre toward the pastry’s edge in all directions. If the dough sticks to your rolling pin, place a sheet of plastic wrap on the dough and roll over the plastic.

Using your fluted tart pan as a guide, cut the dough about an inch wider than the pan. Line the mold with the pastry and trim the edges.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm.

Remove the plastic wrap and,  using a fork, poke a series of holes in the pastry. (This will prevent the pastry from buckling during cooking.) Cover the pastry with tinfoil and fill with about 1 1/2 cups of pie weights (or dried beans).

Bake the pie in a 375 F preheated oven for about 10 minutes, then remove the foil. Sprinkle with the grated Parmesan cheese. Continue to bake until completely cooked, about 20 minutes in total.



Leave A Comment