Goat’s Cheese & Pepper Tarts

As Mother’s Day approaches, you are probably thinking that you have the best mother in the world.  Alas, I must inform you that, unless you happen to be my brother (in which case hello, and please remember it’s Mother’s Day on Sunday!), you are sadly mistaken – I’ve got her!

My mother is famed for her foolishness:  her inability to write a text message that borders on making sense, her abymsal taste in films (I’m talking about gems like Van Helsing and Sex and the City 2), her comical ways of expressing herself and unfathomable trains of “thought” (I use that term loosely).

Yet for all her silliness, she is surely one of the most wonderful people in the world.  I don’t think I have ever met anyone so optimistic, kind-hearted or giving, and the courage and sense of adventure with which she approaches her life is admired by everyone who knows her.  Beyond that, as a mother, she is endlessly supportive and loving, and has, against all odds, raised two reasonably intelligent, well-adjusted children.

I can’t spend Mother’s Day with her this year, but I shall be thinking of her and wishing I could enjoy her company and treat her to a nice home-cooked dinner.  This recipe for a vegetable tart is one that she picked up from a magazine and passed on to me – she often makes it for me when I’m at home, and whenever I make it away from home I think fondly of her.  By all means, treat your mother to a tart this weekend!

Goat’s Cheese & Pepper Tarts

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 red and 1 green pepper, cut into small chunks

1 red onion, cut into wedges

1 tbsp olive oil

375g packet ready-rolled puff pastry (alternatively, roll it out yourself)

1 tbsp milk

150g goat’s cheese, cut into small squares

2 tsp chopped thyme

Method:

1.  Preheat oven to 200C.  Put the peppers and onion wedges in a tin, coat with the olive oil and roast for 25 minutes until softened.

2.  Meanwhile, cut the pastry sheet into 4 rectangles and place them on baking sheets.  Score a 1cm border around the edge of each one, brush them with milk and bake for 10-12 minutes.

3.  Remove the pastry from the oven.  It should have puffed up somewhat – push down the central part of each piece.

4.  Fill with peppers, onion, goat’s cheese and thyme, return to the oven and cook for 10 minutes more.

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