Baking - Desserts, Recipe

Sneaky Chocolate Beet Tart

The first exciting baking experience I want to tell you about is a recipe that my brother sent to me. He knew I had tried baking with beets before, and he had a friend who made a purple velvet beet tart, so he sent it along for me to try. Last year we seemed to get beets all the time in our CSA box, but this year I waited and waited to get beets so I could finally try to make this recipe.

This is a custard pie (same consistency as a pumpkin pie), using lots of eggs. It was pretty straightforward to make, and when eaten fresh you would hardly know there were 2 1/2 cups of beets in it – although the colour may be a giveaway!

I must confess, when I saw the list of ingredients in the crust I rolled my eyes; not because I think they’re bad or that it wouldn’t taste good, but because I didn’t have most of them on hand and didn’t want to buy full packages of all the ingredients for one tart. So I made a plain old graham crust, which worked just fine.

This recipe makes A LOT of filling. I made one crust in a 9-inch pie dish, filled it up, and probably had enough left for a whole other pie! Since I didn’t have another crust ready to go, I just baked the rest in a few ramekins. So if you make this recipe I would recommend either making two crusts, or cutting the recipe in half.

I would also suggest eating it fresh. It was extremely delicious in flavour and texture on the day it was made. We were going away the day after I made it, so I froze the ones in the ramekins. When we got them out to eat, the flavour of the beets was much more pronounced. So if you love beets, it would be fine; but if you’re trying to hide the beets, it might not work so well. The texture also became a bit more curdled, as opposed to the velvety texture when it was fresh.

You can find this delicious recipe here.

Baking - General, Recipe

Zucchini Challenge, Take Two

The abundance of summer is back in our CSA boxes, with another season of zucchini upon us. You may remember the great zucchini challenge from last summer, where my husband and I went head to head to see who could make a better use of zucchini. Well, there was no competition this year (not yet, anyway), but I did make it a personal challenge to try and come up with more interesting ways to use our zucchini.

It’s been a few weeks since I made this recipe, so I can’t even remember what made me think to look for it, or how I searched for it, but I found a recipe for a quiche crust made with zucchini. The recipe also called for carrots; I didn’t have any carrots, but I did have beets, so I made the substitution – hence the bright pink in the photos.

This recipe used 2 whole cups of grated zucchini – fantastic! Now, you might ask, as I did initially, won’t that be a soggy crust? Zucchini is so full of moisture, it always makes the top of my pizza soupy unless I cook it first to release some of the moisture. Well, if you read the recipe at the link below you’ll see that you sprinkle the grated zucchini with salt and let it drain for awhile, and then squeeze out as much of the moisture as you can. It’s a bit of work, but well worth it, both for the meal and for using up the zucchini!

I highly recommend trying this recipe out. It also uses a minimal amount of flour, so those of you who are gluten free could probably substitute another flour for the wheat flour and still get great results. You can find the link for the recipe below the photos.

Click here for the recipe for zucchini crust.