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Goat Cheese Tartlet with Flavored Oils (July 25, 2001)

Gift of the Gods, the Art of Wine and Revelry

Agency Doner Canada.
Photography Instil Productions Inc.
Sculpture by permission of Youssef Hasbani.

The most fabulous show has just opened at Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum: "Gift of the Gods, the Art of Wine and Revelry"! The ROM combed its own collections to come up with 400+ artifacts plus a lively discourse on the 7,000 year history of wine from ancient times to today. We'll round up friends and go this Saturday, then host a smart little dinner party at our house afterwards. A toast to the god of wine and revelry - Dionysos to the Greeks, Bacchus to the Romans - will certainly set the tone, followed by fabulous food and spirited, cultured conversation sparked by this fabulous exhibit.

What to serve? Better ask Jamie Kennedy, owner and executive chef at JK ROM, the museum's delightful restaurant, whose new cookbook Seasons is full of his terrific recipes. To start, here's one of our favourites...

Goat Cheese Tartlet with Flavored Oils

This is a splendid do-ahead recipe; make in the afternoon, then serve later at room temperature, or just warmed through. Serve as a substantial first course, or slice into quarters for delightful hors d'ouevres. Fit for the Gods, indeed!

Have on hand: food processor and two plastic squeeze bottles.
Prepare ahead: 1 roasted red pepper, a baked head of garlic.
Prepare and bake a pie pastry in six 4-inch (10cm) scalloped tart forms.

For the flavoured oils:

¼ cup roasted red peppers (60 mL)
¼ cup fine olive oil (60 mL)
¼ cup pitted Niçoise olives (60mL)

For the filling:

1 cup milk (240 mL)
2 eggs
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
¾ cup crumbled fresh goat cheese (180 mL)
6 Tbs. Roasted red pepper strips (90 mL)
1 bunch green onions, washed and sliced on the bias
6 cloves baked garlic
3 Tbs. pitted Niçoise olives (45 mL)
1 tsp. dried rosemary (5 mL)

Prepare the flavoured oils. You will need a food processor and two squeeze bottles. Purée the roasted red peppers with half the olive oil. Pour the mixture into one of the squeeze bottles. Repeat the process with the olives and the remaining oil. Reserve.

Mix the milk, eggs, and spices vigorously in a stainless steel bowl. Evenly distribute the remaining ingredients in each of the six pre-baked tart forms. Fill each form just shy of the brim with the egg mixture and bake for 20 minutes or until the filling is golden brown and set.

Accompanying wine?
Tony Recommends...

For this dish, the best match is a crisp Sauvignon Blanc - from the Loire Valley (Sancerre or Menetou-Salon) or from New Zealand or Ontario. (In general terms: a dry medium-bodied white wine without oak ageing. Members can see a wide selection in the database.)

Presentation:
Make a random squiggly pattern on six dinner plates with the oils from each of the squeeze bottles. Place a warm tart on each plate. Serve at once.

Happily tested by Helen Hatton and Ron Morris.

Gift of the Gods runs from June 16 to October 21, 2001.
For more information visit the Royal Ontario Museum web site at www.rom.on.ca or call the 24 hour information phone, 416-586-8000.

Seasons® is published by Whitecap Books, Ltd.
Photograph by Michael Mahovlich.

 

 

 

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