This recipe is inspired by my favorite appetizer at the restaurant where I work. Beets are such a fantastic winter vegetable that some people tend to associate with the awful canned beets you find at the salad bar, and I am determined to show everyone that they are so much more! With the tang of the goat cheese, the spiciness of the arugula and the freshness from the citrus, the beets are really complimented in every way I know how. I hope this changes a mind or two about beets. —Jeanna DeMarco
For the crust – Pulse butter, flour and salt together in a food processor till the butter is the size of peas. Start slowly adding the egg till the dough looks like wet sand. Empty the contents onto the counter top, press together and form into a disc. Wrap in Plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 min. After 30 min, roll out dough to about ¾ inch and press into tart shell, cutting off any excess dough. Place a piece of parchment paper over the tart shell and fill with beans and blind bake at 350 for 15 to 20 min until dough feels dry. Remove beans and parchment paper and brush the shell with the left over egg. Return to oven for 2 minutes. Put shell aside to cool.
For the filling - Place beets in a pot and cover with water. I use the golden beets in this recipe so they do not dye the rest of the tart red. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and cook until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain beets and peel by taking the warm beet and gently rubbing the skin off with a paper towel. Let cool slightly and slice thinly. Sprinkle beets with ½ tsp of salt.
In a bowl combine Goat cheese, zest and heavy cream. Mix until smooth. Put this mixture on the bottom of tart shell and spread out so its one even layer. Place sliced beets over the goat cheese mixture so they overlap.
In a separate bowl beat the 3 room temperature eggs with remaining ½ tsp of salt. Put the milk in a pot on the stove over low heat until scalded. Add a small amount of the scalded milk to the eggs to temper, slowly add the remainder of the milk. Pass the mixture though a strainer to remove any eggs that may have scrambled and pour over the beets. Place the tart on a sheet pan and bake in the oven at 375 for 20 to 30 minutes until egg mixture has set. Let cool for 15 minutes.
Citrus Arugula Salad
For the salad - take the segmented grapefruit and tangerine and cut into ½ inch pieces. Mix the fruit together and set aside. In a big bowl add white balsamic with a pinch of salt and pepper and wisk together. Slowly add EVOO and wisk to combine. Add the arugula and shallots with 3 TBS of citrus mixture, toss to coat salad in the dressing.
When tart is set, slice and top the individual slices with a small handful of salad. I promise you that this is your perfect and definitely best late winter tart.