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Sweet and Savory Tarts at Tanglewood

Sweet and Savory Tarts at Tanglewood

blueberry almond tart

 

Music stirs the senses.

It had been some time since our last visit and I’d forgotten the beauty of the sweeping lawns, lush flowers, deep green Berkshire mountains and the unparalleled music at Tanglewood in Western, Massachusetts.

For those of you unfamiliar with Tanglewood, it is the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and plays host to distinguished musicians the world over.

Tanglewood was named for New England author Nathaniel Hawthorne, who wrote the children’s story Tanglewood Tales while vacationing in the Berkshires in 1853. This year at Tanglewood we chose to hear Michael Tilson Thomas conduct Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. (Now before you say, “but I thought you liked James Brown”- I do. I have very eclectic musical taste but Beethoven…there’s just something about Beethoven…especially his No. 9 in a tranquil mountain setting.)

 

tanglewood nature

 

Tanglewood is a fantastic venue for music lovers of all ages. Lawn tickets are only $17.00 and anyone under 17 is admitted for free. So, if you love classical music, jazz, opera, would like to hear John Williams perform his famous musical scores, or would simply like to expose your children to something decent and beautiful – this is a divine place to be.

Picnics are a time honored tradition at Tanglewood and you’ll see a whole range of approaches to picnicking. The family next to us set up their table with linen, crusty baguettes, cheese and wine. We opted for floral tablecloths laid out on the grass with freshly squeezed lemonade and a basket full of rich, mouthwatering just-baked sweet and savory tarts.

My Tanglewood tarts are quite easy to make. For the main course, a savory tomato quiche…

 

tomato quiche

 

Savory Tomato Quiche

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Shell

135 g. all purpose flour
118 grams brown rice flour
100 g. quinoa flour*
1 tsp. salt
2 sticks of butter plus one tbs. (diced)
80 ml. ice water

Place flours, salt, butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Process on low speed until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water and mix for about 10 seconds at a time — just until mixture comes together. Form dough into disk, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.

Roll out dough 1/4 inch thick and use it to line the tart pan (you can use 1 large or 2 medium tart pans). If you have trouble rolling the dough, you can press it into the tart pan and smooth it out with your fingers. Dock the dough with a fork, fill with pie weights and pre-bake about 10 minutes.

Filling:

1 tbs. butter
1 tbs. olive oil
1 large leek, white part, chopped
1 large scallion, chopped
1 tsp. oregano
1 red pepper, minced
2 cloves garlic
6 large eggs
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
8 oz. Comte Le Fort
2 plum tomatoes, sliced
2 tbs. grated parmesan

Melt butter and oil in a sautee pan over medium heat. Add leek and shallot. Saute for 2 minutes. Add garlic, red pepper and oregano. Cook for another 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.

In medium sized bowl hand whisk eggs, cream, milk. Stir in cooled onion mixture and Comte.

Pour filling into prepared tart shells, leaving a bit of space at the top. Gently garnish the filling with sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle with parmesan and fresh black pepper.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until the top is lightly golden and an inserted knife comes out clean.

* I got the idea for using quinoa flour (pronounced keen-wa) from La Tartine Gourmande. It’s nice flour to use because it adds a nutty taste to the tart and also makes it less doughy. You can buy it here. You can substitute any flour in this recipe, including all purpose flour. Also, be sure to select a rich, nutty and sharp cheese. I used a Comte cheese from a New England purveyor because it’s what I had on hand but a good local Gruyere-like cheese works well.

And now for the sweet tartlettes…

 

tart collage

 

Blueberry Almond Tartlettes

Crust:
140 g. sugar
400 g. butter
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
455 g. flour

1. Mix sugar, butter, eggs and vanilla with dough hook just until combined.
2. Add flour and mix until smooth. Do not over mix.
3. Refrigerate 30 minutes.

Filling:
170 g. almond paste
180 g. sugar
3-4 egg whites
fresh berries

Place paste, sugar and one egg white in stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Combine until smooth.

Add egg whites one at a time. You want the batter to be thin but not completely runny so monitor the texture. It’s okay to leave some egg-white out. Refrigerate 1 hour.

To assemble the tarts:

Line tart pan with with rolled out dough (1/4 inch thick). Dock with fork. Line shell with pie weights and pre-bake about 5 minutes – just until the sides firm up a bit.

Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. Add filling to 1/2 way up the side of the pan. Top with fresh berries.

Bake anywhere from 10-20 minutes, depending upon your oven, until filling sets. Filling should puff up and turn light golden brown.

Cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar.

The Tanglewood summer line-up for 2010 will be released in March. If you don’t want to wait until next year, Boston Symphony Hall tickets go on sale today. Sadly, there’s no picnicking inside. (be sure to click the play button below for inspiration- give it a minute to load before playing)


Get inspired to love & support local food. We have some great ideas sprouting up so browse our site for more delicious finds.

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  1. Elle

    8 September

    Not only are these gorgeous, but they also look incredibly delicious. Very nice!

  2. a tasteful garden

    8 September

    you continue to tell such wonderful, visual feasts of stories. so beautiful. i grew up going to Tanglewood, so this is an especially great post to read.

  3. Oh yum, those look delicious, delectable and divine! I love quinoa but have never heard of quinoa flour – I imagine it would add something special to cakes… can’t wait to try it out!

  4. Gen

    8 September

    This post is magnificent. I wish there was still time to attend this year. Glad there’s still time for the tarts.

  5. Tartelette

    8 September

    Love using quinoa flour in crusts! Both these tarts look delicious!

  6. Sandy

    9 September

    What will happen if I use all white flour for the quiche crust?

  7. El

    9 September

    Hi Sandy, Using all purpose flour will make it taste like regular American pie dough. There’s no problem in using it. Some people need gluten free flours and others just like the taste of quinoa.

  8. Anonymous

    16 September

    If I would not wake up the entire house (insomnia) I would make these right now. Nice recipes and pics!!!!!!

  9. Rosa's Yummy Yums

    20 September

    Your tartelets and quiche look fantastic and so appetizing!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  10. Irene

    1 October

    These are both really amazing! I cannot believe that I’m only now seeing your blog. Your photos are inspirational.

  11. cheri

    2 October

    Your site is beautiful. So glad to find it. That caramel pear looks delicious. What a great idea.

  12. M.

    10 May

    both tarts just look gorgeous….I’m so hungry right now….

  13. valerie s.

    17 May

    These tarts are absolutely beautiful. I enjoy the attention to detail in all your recipes. Question, did you add the sliced almond edge before or after baking the tarts? I’m planning to make these Friday, can’t wait!

  14. El

    19 May

    Hi Valerie, I added the almonds before baking. I hope you enjoy them.

  15. kellypea

    6 September

    Sorry I’ve been such a slacker with visiting. I always feel like I’ve had a breath of fresh air after I’ve been here, though. Wonderful, all. I have my eye on that tomato tart recipe. Need some quinoa flour…

  16. Erin

    20 September

    Both the quiche and tartletts look delish. Looking forward to giving both a try!

  17. R Luyster

    28 January

    Surprised that no one has asked yet what temperature the tarts are baked at. Any clue?

  18. El

    29 January

    R Luster. Sorry, it’s written up top- 400 degrees.

  19. Tracey

    10 May

    How many tarts does the recipe make?

    • El

      12 May

      I wish I could remember Tracey but it was 6 years ago that I posted this. Sorry about that.

  20. Mahee Ferlini

    6 July

    These look delicious and very healthy!!

    • El

      6 July

      thanks!

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