Every now and then I make something incredibly tasty that isn’t remotely nerdy. If you want to impress folks at your holiday shindigs, you can throw this elegant looking carrot tart together in about ten minutes. It’s equally good as a fancy vegetable side dish or a vegetarian main course.
Striped Carrot Tart
- 1 store bought vegetarian pie crust
- ¼ cup carrot hummus
- 6 red or purple carrots
- 6 orange carrots
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp fresh rosemary leaves, stripped and chopped
- 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, stripped
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp fresh cracked black pepper
- ¼ cup finely shredded mozzarella cheese
You’re welcome to use your favorite pie crust recipe, but in the spirit of making something fast and easy I typically use a refrigerated vegan pie crust from my local grocery store. (Check the ingredients before serving this to vegans. A lot of pie crusts are accidentally vegan these days because oil is cheaper than butter, but some are still made from lard.)
Line a rectangular tart pan with your crust. I love my rectangular tart pan. It lets me make fancy looking striated pies with a fraction the effort. Working in straight lines is so much easier than methodically curling endless rows of fruit or vegetables around a circular pie pan.
Spread ¼ cup carrot hummus along the bottom. You can find carrot, beet, white bean, and a variety of alternative hummuses (hummi?) at most larger grocery stores these days. If yours doesn’t stock it, scroll down for my carrot hummus recipe.
Peel the carrots and cut off the tops. I used a mandolin to cut mine into ⅛ inch strips, but you’re welcome to use a knife. Either way, thinly slice the carrots length-wise.
Create rows of orange and red carrot strips stretching the length of the tart pan. Alternate colors every ¼ – ½ inch, depending on how stripey you want it to look. You want the carrots to stand up in neat rows, but they don’t need to be crammed in super tight. Remember, you want a tiny bit of gap so the egg, cheese, and herbs can dribble down and flavor the tart.
Speaking of which, once your carrots are in place, whisk together your egg, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, and cheese.
Pour the egg mix over your neatly lined up carrots. Gently press the top of the pie so the mix penetrates as deeply as possible
Bake your fancy looking carrot tart at 350F for 50 minutes or until the custard sets, the carrots are soft, and crust is golden brown. Finish it with a generous sprinkle of kosher salt or pink sea salt on top.
This forgiving recipe can either be served fresh and hot from the oven or at room temperature.
Use a sharp knife to cut it into 8-10 triangular slices. The end pieces will be slightly awkward wedges. Feel free to set them aside for your own secret seconds.
If your grocery store doesn’t stock carrot hummus you can make your own in about five minutes.
- 2 large orange carrots, peeled and quartered
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- ¼ cup olive oil
- juice of one lemon
- 1 ½ tbsp honey
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp fresh ground pepper
- 2-3 tablespoons water
Toss the carrots and garlic into a food processor and blend until they’re finely minced.
Strain the chickpeas. Instead of pouring the juice down the drain, pour it into a container and save it for later vegan recipes. These days folks call that juice “aquafaba” (which sounds so much more elegant than “canned chickepea juice”). It’s a fantastic egg substitute! Substitute 1 tbsp of aquafaba for 1 egg in recipes you want to veganize. It’ll be fine in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for 3 months.
Rinse the strained chickpeas and toss them into the food processor. Pulse a few times until they’re blended with the carrots and garlic.
Pour in the olive oil, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper. Pulse until everything turns into a smooth paste. Once it reaches your desired texture, pour in the water, 1 tbsp at a time, until it reaches your preferred thickness. When in doubt, leave it a little on the runny side. It’ll firm up overnight in the fridge.
It’s a nice, slightly sweet variation to add to your veggie tray over the holidays.