Gerard’s Mustard Tart

October 9, 2010 § 5 Comments

Well, its been made and eaten with a great deal of enjoyment.  The tart was delicious and that it was so pretty seemed an added bonus.  The aroma as it baked was gorgeous, even my daughter, who is still fighting whatever it was that took her down on Saturday, commented on how good the room smelled.

I went with the ‘Bonne Idee’ version since our market is heaving with heirloom tomatoes right now.  My husband was helping me season the egg/creme fraiche mix and we both thought it needed more bite.  This is most likely a result of the brands of mustard we happened to be using or just our personal taste.  We ended up adding about 2 teaspoons of white wine vinegar to add some sharpness to the mixture.  I added five slices of tomato which cause the filling to spill over the top of the crust, and since the recipe explicitly says not to let this happen, I spooned out some of the egg mixture.

The tart was beautiful.  It cooked perfectly in just under 30 minutes.  The dough, unlike my first attempt with Dorie’s sweet tart dough, turned out perfectly.  The tart itself had a great balance of flavours and went perfectly with a simple green salad and a glass of white (more about the glass of white in a minute).

But, for me this tart crossed too far into the realm of being a quiche.  With one more egg and almost as much cream in the recipe as the neighbouring one for a quiche (Gorgonzola-Apple Quiche, p. 157), why is this is a tart and not a quiche?  I would love to know if there is a distinction or if it’s just a matter of taste and preference.  Also if anyone has a tip for getting a crust not to shrink beneath the edges of the pan while baking I’d love to hear it.

As much a I enjoyed Gerard’s Mustard Tart, I think I’ll stick with my tried and true tart recipes and look forward to trying quiche on a French Friday to come.

A note on the wine.  At my local market I am lucky enough to have befriended the wine buyer.  Tonight he sent me home with a Macon Villages, Cave de Lugny that paired perfectly with the tart. I’m not usually a lover of Chardonnay but the smooth, slightly sweet taste of this one seemed to heighten the acidity of the mustard in the tart.


The lead up to Gerard’s Mustart Tart

October 8, 2010 § Leave a comment

I jumped ahead a bit last weekend.  With my daughter sick and sound asleep for more hours than I would have thought possible I tried making the Orange Almond Tart but using Pears.  We have a pear tree in the yard which drops more fruit than we can use so any excuse to cook it up is easily taken.

Pastry is not something that intimidates me.  I had the good fortune to attend a cooking class in Provence with Lydie Marshall (good for having the opportunity to meet Lydie and also to have met the man of my dreams) and her simple straight forward pastry has become my go to – it works everytime without fail. Pate Brisee Short Crust Dough

So it was with reluctance that I tried Dorie’s Sweet tart crust recipe to accompany the Pear tart.  Overall the tart was edible but not what I would call a success.  The dough really didn’t come together for me and when I tried to roll it out it was impossible.  I ended up pressing the crust into the pan which resulted in it being too dense and overworked.   I also made obvious mistakes – I didn’t have a 9.5 in tart pan and used a baking dish instead. I also left no room between the pears so the almond custard couldn’t fully bubble to the surface leaving uncooked pockets.  In the end – everything tasted good but I would not have been proud to serve it.

So on to the Mustard tart.  I’ve mentioned Lydie’s tart dough, but what I didn’t mention that when I learned how to make the dough it was for a Tomato, Gruyere and Nyons Olive tart that I still remember eating even though it was 10 years ago.  I have made that same tart many times since and always with a great deal of success.  I also discovered another ‘go to’ tart last summer.  The Barefoot Contessa’s  Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart.  This one is made with store bought puff pastry but it is delicious and so easy that erases any fear of making a tart.

With that said, this Gerard’s Mustard tart has a lot to live up to.  I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

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