A lentil and seasonal vegetable tart based on a mixture of roasted sweet potato, courgette, aubergine and red lentil in a simple tomato sauce to bind, topped with a light sprinkling of lemon and coriander bread crumbs. Serve with runner beans and watercress salad.
Savoury pastry cases
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
100ml vegetable stock
1 bay leaf
2 courgettes, diced
1 large aubergine, diced
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
200g red lentils
50g bread cut into small cubes
Zest of one lemon
1.In a medium heavy based pan, heat the oil and add the onion, cook until softened, add the garlic and cook for a few seconds longer, add the chopped tomatoes, stock and the bay leaf, cook on a gentle heat, stirring often.
2. Place the diced vegetables and sweet potato onto a roasting tray, drizzle with olive oil, season and roast for approximately 20 - 25 minutes, or until soft.
3. In a separate pan place the lentils, add boiling water from a kettle covering the lentils, bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer, cook uncovered for approximately 10 - 15 minutes until cooked but still slightly crunchy, drain and set aside.
4. To make the crumb, add semi-stale bread cubes to a food processor until fine and even, then add the lemon zest and chopped coriander, process for a few seconds longer until everything is mixed through.
5. Remove tomato sauce pan from the heat and take out bay leaf, add sugar and seasoning to taste then add the roasted vegetables and cooked lentils.
6. Spoon the hot mixture into the pastry cases, top with the lemon and coriander crumb and place in the hot oven for 10 minutes until golden.
If you prefer to use your own pastry tart cases here is a simple savoury pastry method:
225g plain flour
1/4 tsp salt
125g chilled butter, diced
2 1/2 tbsp iced water
Use your fingertips to quickly rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
Sprinkle 2 1/2 tbsp of the iced water over the flour mixture and stir with a round-bladed knife or small spatula, mix until it begins to hold together.
Bring the pastry together with your hands and transfer to a lightly floured work surface, briefly knead the pastry lightly with your fingertips for about 1 minute or until smooth and soft. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in fridge for 30 minutes.