Indian-Inspired Cauliflower and Sweet Potato Tart Recipe
If you love aloo gobi, which is an Indian potato (aloo) and cauliflower (gobi) dish, I'm confident that you will adore this Indian-inspired savory tart. When I first got married, my husband's grandmother taught me a lot of Indian dishes. The traditional dishes on their own are great, but I also enjoy playing around with them, and incorporating elements into French dishes. I find that the aesthetics of French cuisine works very well with the bold flavors of Indian food.
This particular recipe combines a French onion tart with my twist on the aforementioned aloo gobi. I created a homemade fine-herb tart shell and filled the bottom with onion compote topped with a flavorful Indian cauliflower and sweet potato preparation. The two elements are connected by the natural sweetness of the onions and sweet potatoes. A little Munster cheese on top finishes the dish, though you can substitute with any mild, melt-able cheese.
Yields: 6 servings1¼ cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons sea salt
8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
3-4 tablespoons ice water
¼ cup curly parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon tarragon, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, chopped
½ tablespoon garlic chives, snipped
5 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 sweet potato, peeled, boiled and diced
½ head cauliflower
juice of half a lemon
½ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
1 (1-inch) chunk fresh ginger, peeled and julienned
¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
4 ounces tomato sauce
¼ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon garam masala
3 slices Munster cheese, halved
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
For the tart shell:
In a mixing bowl, combine 1¼ cups flour, ¾ teaspoon sea salt in a small bowl and place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Add the cold butter, 1 egg and ice water. Using a pastry dough blender, blend until the mixture becomes a thick dough. Add the chives, 2 tablespoons parsley, garlic powder and tarragon. Make sure not to over-mix it.
Dust a flat surface with the remaining flour. Place the dough and roll it out into a (14" x 10") rectangular. Transfer to a non-stick rectangular (12" x 8") tart mold lined with parchment paper, following the curve of the mold, crimp the dough against the edge. Leave a little excess above the edge because the dough will settle a bit in the oven. Prick the dough with a fork. Chill in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes.
Making the onion compote:
In a large, non-stick pan, heat about 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the onions. When they're shiny, season with salt, pepper and sugar. Lower the heat to very low and cook for 40 minutes. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and cook for about 10 minutes until fully evaported. Adjust seasoning. Transfer to a plate.
Soaking the cauliflower:
To cut the head of the cauliflowers into florets, remove and discard the stem and the green leaves. Cut into wedges from the bottom. Pull and separate the small florets manually.
Place the florets in a bowl, cover them with water and add the juice of half the lemon. Stir well. Soak for 5 minutes, then drain.
Making the base of the tart with aloo gobi:
In a large non-stick pan, heat the rest of olive oil, add the cumin seeds and reduce the heat to medium-low. When the cumin seeds start popping (after 5-10 seconds), add 1 teaspoon of julienned ginger and garam masala. Add the tomato sauce and about ¼ cup of water; stir until the mixture forms a thick paste.
Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the cauliflower and turmeric powder and cook for 5 minutes. Add the sweet potato potatoes. Sauté by tossing the saucepan to prevent the potatoes from breaking. Add about ½ cup of water and a pinch of sugar. Cook for about 10 minutes until fork-tender. Add the remaining julienned ginger and 2 tablespoons of the onion compote. Continue cooking about 5 minutes, stirring often to prevent the vegetables from burning at the bottom of the pan. Adjust seasoning. Season with more salt (if necessary). Cover and let stand until ready to assemble.
Fill the tart shell with the onion compote. Top with the cauliflower and sweet potato mixture. Finish b y placing the Munster cheese slices in the center. Bake at 375°F for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350°F and cook for another 25 minutes until golden. Finally broil for about 2 minutes to get a nice golden, cheesy top.
Remove from the oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes.
Garnish with fresh mint leaves. Serve warm or at room temperature with a green salad.
I used Munster cheese, which is a semi-soft cheese that tastes pretty bland, because I didn't want to over-power the taste of the tart filling. You could subsitute with other mild cheeses such as mozzarella.Published By: on April 23, 2013.