Non-Vegetarian VegetableTart (aka Leeks, Onions and Eggplant Taste Way Better with Bacon Tart)

By • March 8, 2011 • 0 Comments

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Author Notes: I love fresh vegetables but I'm also a serious bacon fiend; I'm of the opinion that bacon pretty much enhances everything. I also like the way the two cheeses interplay with the veggies and the bacon to make a really satisfying and filling meal.Katya Lezin

Serves 8-10

Tart Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 sticks cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5-8 tablespoons water
  1. Pulse together flour, butter, and salt in a food processor just until mixture resembles coarse meal with some roughly pea-size butter lumps.
  2. Drizzle 5 tablespoons ice water evenly over mixture and gently pulse until incorporated.
  3. Squeeze a small handful of dough: If dough doesn’t hold together, add more ice water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, stirring until incorporated. Do not overwork dough, or pastry will be tough.
  4. Turn out dough onto a floured work surface and roll out into a large circle, then line a large pie dish with the pastry and chill in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Prick the pastry all over with the tines of a fork then line it with aluminum foil and fill it with dry beans or pastry weights and bake in the lower third of the oven until the edges of the pastry are golden, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Tart Filling

  • 8 slices bacon, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds leeks, just the green part, cleaned (look out for inner dirt) and sliced in 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 large eggplant, sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 7 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 8 oz. mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 4 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
  1. Heat a large frying pan, then add the bacon and cook until the bacon is slightly golden but not crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon but leave the bacon fat behind. Add the leeks to it and stir so they are coated with fat. Cook, covered, until they are tender, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally so they don't stick to the bottom of the pan. Season with salt and pepper and remove onto a plate. Set aside.
  2. Add a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan, if the bacon fat has disappeared, and sauté the onion pieces until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  3. Beat one egg with a fork and place in a bowl. Put the ½ cup flour in another bowl and season with salt and pepper. Dip each eggplant slice in egg, then flour. Shake off excess flour, then fry 2-3 minutes per side in frying pan (you may need to add another tablespoon of olive oil). Set on paper towels to soak up excess grease.
  4. Whisk together the remaining 6 eggs until they are broken up, then whisk in the milk and the cream. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Sprinkle the grated mozzarella cheese over the partially cooked tart shell. Arrange the leeks, then the bacon, then the onions and finally the eggplant evenly over the cheese. Pour the custard mixture over it, then dot with the crumbles of goat cheese.
  6. Place the pie pan on a baking sheet and bake it in the bottom third of the oven until the top is golden and puffed and the custard is cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.
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