Saturday, September 25, 2010

My Life with Snow White

Oh my God!  You cook like one of the seven dwarfs!

This is what my Valentine exclaimed as he entered the kitchen.

Naturally, this made me Happy.  Clearly J understands how joyous my time dancing around a soup pot makes me.  However, I quickly felt Dopey when I realized he was talking about the disastrous state in which I had left the kitchen.  I became a little Grumpy for surely he knows that I am never Bashful when I am concocting culinary delights for us.  I may be a little Sneezy from being heavy handed on the pepper.  Maybe I should see a Doc and get my head looked at.


You can whistle while you clean up the kitchen, Snow White, Sleepy's going to bed.

J exclaimed this with a loving smile in his voice.  He has also described me as a crafty whirling dervish who scurries about gathering up everything I see and throws it all up in the air expecting fireworks.  When I get fireworks, it's sublime.  When no fireworks occur, I harrumph and start all over again in hopes of making an even bigger light display...which I think is pretty swell.

Beet and Caramelized Onion Tarts

2 beets
1 yellow onion, sliced
4 Tbl butter
2 Tbl chili oil
3 sprigs rosemary
1 tsp ground sage
1 1/2 cups water
2/3 cup sugar
salt n' pepper
1 sheet puff pastry
Shaved pecorino (or crumbled bleu or goat cheese)

For the onions
In a small sauce pan, heat butter and oil over low heat until butter melts.  Stir in sage and add rosemary sprigs.  Add sliced onions and stir to coat.  Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.  Cook over low heat, stirring about every five minutes until onions are nice and caramelized (about 30 minutes).  Remove rosemary stems and discard.

For the beets
In a small sauce pan, bring water, sugar, 1 1/2 Tbl salt, and 1 Tbl freshly ground pepper to a boil.  Wash and peel the beets.  Using a mandolin, slice beets into thin disks.  Add beets to the pot and cook for 3 minutes.  Turn off heat and allow beats to remain in the hot liquid for an additional 2 minutes.  Strain beets and separate them to dry completely.

For the tarts
Preheat oven to 400. Defrost puff pastry according to directions.  On a lightly floured board, cut pastry into four rectangles and roll out into approximately 5" by 4" tarts.  Using a knife, create a 1/2" border around the edge being careful not to  slice all the way through.  Inside the border, prick a gazillion holes with a fork to prevent pastry from rising.  Place on baking sheet

Layer beets into pastry, slightly overlapping.  Each tarts uses about 6 to 8 slices.  Using a spoon, spread a thin layer of the onions on top. Throw those suckers in the oven for about 20 minutes.  Take tarts out of oven and top with your choice of cheese.  Return to oven for an additional five minutes until cheese has melted.  Drizzle with a SMALL amount of balsamic.  Serve with wilted spinach and beet greens or a simple arugula salad.

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