A brilliant summer lunch or supper, and a terrific way to eat up those abundant summer zucchinis. Behold a phyllo-based tart with ricotta, pine nuts and zucchini.
Nino Shaye Weiss of the fabulous Jewish Viennese Food blog (www.jewishviennesefood.com) explains the difference between a pulled and stretched dough, “thin enough to read a newspaper through,” and store-bought phyllo pastry, which saves us from the rather demanding task of manhandling pulled and stretched dough. As Weiss explains, “for the inexperienced, it is quite nerve-wracking.” To say the least. Phyllo also adds “an extra crunch to the strudel experience. Not surprisingly, even famous places like Kurt Gutenbrunner’s excellent Café Sabarsky in New York’s Neue Galerie admittedly serve strudel made with phyllo.” Read more about Vienes strudel using phyllo here: https://jewishviennesefood.com/viennese-apple-strudel/
For our purposes I will never ask that you make your own phyllo, that way lies madness. But I will insist you have pre-made frozen phyllo in your freezer at all times. It’s simple and delicious and makes any filling a real treat. Like this pie:
Zucchini & Pine Nut Phyllo Tart
- 5 sheets filo pastry
- Olive oil
- 250g (5oz) ricotta
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 3tbsp basil leaves, shredded
- Pinch of grated nutmeg
- 75g (2½oz) Parmesan, freshly grated
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 courgettes, thinly sliced
- ¼tsp dried chilli flakes
- ½tsp ground or crushed sumac
- Large handful pine nuts
- Heat oven to 200°C (gas mark 6). Grease a large tart or pie tin and line with the 5 sheets of filo pastry, brushing them with a little oil and slightly overlapping each sheet.
- Transfer to the oven and cook for 7-10 mins, or until just golden. In a bowl, beat the ricotta with the eggs, basil, grated nutmeg, two thirds of the Parmesan and the garlic. Set aside.
- Spread the pastry with the ricotta mix, then top with the courgette slices. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese, the chilli and the sumac. Season with salt. Bake for 30 mins, or until the filling is golden. Scatter over the pine nuts about 5 mins before removing from oven.
Special thanks to House & Garden UK for the recipe and the tart photo.