This week I had an open evening that I don't normally have, so after hubby walked in the door from work, I quickly ditched him & the kiddies and headed over to my mom's house so we could try Gerard's Mustard Tart recipe together.
My mom purchased these mustards earlier in the week:
I am a mustard girl. I can't eat a sandwich without mustard, I dip my fries in mustard, and when I was a young school girl, my mom often packed my lunch with my favorite sandwich ... "Mustard Sandwich" ... just a slice of bread with mustard on it. BUT I enjoy my mustard in the plain, ol' regular variety. I strongly despise "deli" mustard that's made with horseradish ... that stuff isn't meant for humans! I also had a somewhat gross/funny experience with Grey Poupon in high school, so I've steered clear of the stuff since my sophomore year. Despite my love affair with mustard, I was really worried about not liking the results of this recipe because the recipe called for mustards that were not within my comfort zone.
My mom & I cautiously opened the jars of mustard, took a few quick sniffs from afar, and we both slowly moved-in on the mustards realizing that they didn't smell that bad after all. Now that we were feeling a little bit better about the mustards, we started chopping our leeks & carrots into matchsticks. We steamed our veggies with a sprig of rosemary. Rosemary ... another item I was somewhat worried about ... the smell and flavor it added was very subtle though. Just perfect. The aroma was actually quite comforting. The leeks made the kitchen smell like a pot roast in the oven on a Sunday afternoon.
My mom had actually made & chilled the crust dough ahead of time, so all I had to do was roll it out & get it into the tart pan that I had chosen. The dough rolled out very nicely and I had no problems getting it into my tart pan. I trimmed the dough where I had excess so that the edges hung down and just barely touched the countertop. I then took the excess dough and folded it back inside the tart shell & pressed it to the sides which made the sides of my shell twice as thick. I would definitely use this technique again because it made the crust look very nice and I was thankful for that little bit of extra reinforcement.
I stuck with the original recipe and just used leeks and carrots with heavy cream in my tart. Before going into the oven:
My baked mustard tart:
My mom's baked tart with leeks, carrots, Chinese eggplant, & tomatoes:
We were anxious to see how our tarts turned out. Both tarts slipped right out of the tart pans and the crusts looked beautiful:
Then came the moment of truth. My mom and I each got ourselves a slice of both tarts. I sat down with a large glass of water ... I was still worried about how these tarts were going to taste. I stared at my plate for a minute and then took a small bite. For the second week in a row, I was very pleasantly surprised. It was delicious! The mustards were perfect, there were no hard pieces of mustard grains, and the crust ... THE CRUST!! .... the crust was A-mazing!!! Flaky & perfect. I'll tell you what ... this cookbook was worth buying just for the crust recipe! My mom & I had even talked (while our tarts were in the oven) about using a pre-made crust next time since this wasn't a "special dessert", but after tasting the crust, we both quickly changed our minds and agreed that making the crust was well worth-it! (It wasn't hard or time consuming ... it just requires some planning.) A mustard tart with mushrooms and tomatoes would make a wonderful breakfast or brunch. I thought it would be nice to make the tart in a square or rectangular shaped tart pan and then cut it into 2x2" pieces for an appetizer or finger-food.
As I write, I have more chilled dough & veggies in my fridge. My plan is to make two more mustard tarts for dinner tonight. I'm going to try one with tomatoes & basil. I will keep you posted on my results.