I am a big fan of garlic but I don’t like it to be too potent so I had a go at Ottolenghi’s caramelised garlic tart from his Plenty book as it seemed to make it a little milder (the recipe has been reproduced here). The comment which accompanied the recipe in the book (which Ottolenghi writes above each recipe and are always worthwhile reading for notes about ingredients or the history of the recipe) said it was delicious so how could I resist?
Firstly… The base of the tart was puff pastry, as opposed to shortcrust, like you might expect. You even blind bake it, which my baking beans couldn’t quite cope with and the pastry still puffed up loads! It did sink back down but I had to give it a little push!
Secondly… The tart involves three, yes THREE!, bulbs of garlic. All the cloves had to be peeled. My what a lot of effort! And these cloves were then blanched, cooked for 10mins in water & a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar then after adding thyme, rosemary, sugar and salt, cooked for 10mins more to reduce to a syrup. My liquid didn’t get quite to the syrup stage, but I don’t think that mattered too much. It did reduce a bit anyway.
Thirdly… The tart has lots of yummy goats cheese in it! Two varieties: hard and soft.
Fourthly… I think this is quite a calorific tart as the custard mix was 100ml double cream and same amount of creme fraiche. It could be made lighter, I guess, but I don’t think there is much point, what with all the cheese.
And so… A couple of hours after getting the puff pastry out of the fridge and all the peeling… This is what I got:
The picture doesn’t do it justice but it did look good. And it tasted good. But will I make it again? Not sure. It was a lot of effort, so definitely a Sunday meal, but whether worth it? Hmmm… But I will think about using puff pastry again as a base for a tart. I’m not a huge fan of shortcrust pastry so this was a nice alternative.