Veggie Cheese Tart

VeggieTartHorizbfLOThe good folk at Pillsbury, where I got the original recipe, call this a ‘Tex-Mex Appetizer Tart’ – but I don’t really think the addition of a can of chiles and a dusting of cilantro qualifies as Tex-Mex. It IS tasty, though – kind of like really good pimiento cheese baked into a buttery crust.

Oh, and I didn’t use cilantro – don’t really care for it. The parsley I drizzled over all fresh from the oven, however, was a lovely – yet maybe even LESS Tex-Mex-y – addition.

The good folk at Pillsbury also called for using store-bought pie dough on a flat baking sheet. I happen to have a tart pan that really doesn’t get used all that often, and a pretty kickin’ tart dough recipe from the ladies at The Silver Palate, so I went ahead using both.

Tart Filling:
•1 box refrigerated pie crust, softened – OR – use my Silver Palate dough recipe, below
•1-1/2 cup Colby-Cheddar cheese blend, shredded
•1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper, drained and chopped
•1/2 cup mayonnaise
•1 can (4.5 oz) chopped green chiles, drained
•1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
•1 can (2-1/4 oz) sliced black olives, drained (optional)

Tart Dough:
•1-1/2 cup flour
•3/4 tsp salt
•1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter cut into small pieces
•3 tbsp ice water

Stir together the cheese, peppers, mayonnaise, chiles, and olives, if using, in a bowl and set aside.

TartPastrybfLOIf using packaged dough, skip ahead.

To make your own dough: combine the flour, salt, and cold, cold butter bits together in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and process until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.

TartCrustBakedbfLOWith the machine running, drizzle just enough of the ice-cold water through the feeding tube until the dough holds together. I don’t know why recipes say this, I always end up using the whole amount of water called for, but you do as you will.

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap or waxed paper and let rest in the fridge for an hour.

Heat the oven to 375º.

TartReadyToBakebfLORoll out the dough on a floured board, and line a 9 inch tart pan. Trim the edges and gently press the dough into the folds. Line the shell with foil and pie weights (or dried beans) and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and weights and allow to cool.

At this point, if you’re using store-bought pie dough, lay it out  flat on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Spread the pepper and cheese mixture into the tart shell.

TartCoolingbfLOIf making a flat tart, spread the mixture to an inch of the crust edge, fold the edge over to form a border, flute a bit for pretty’s sake, and call it a galette (hmmm – far easier, to me, to just use the tart pan).

Pop whichever combination you’ve chosen into your 375º oven for 25 to 35 minutes (my tart was perfect at 30), or until the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with cilantro or parsley, and let rest for ten minutes.

The recipe says to serve this warm, but I thought it very nice offered as a munchie at room temperature.

TASTY. Though, next time, I may cut the olives back a bit…

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