Spiced beetroot & feta tarts with tahini-dressed leaves
Turn root vegetables and puff pastry into a stunning vegetarian starter or main with coriander, cumin and harissa
- Prep:35 mins
Cook:2 hrs 30 mins
- Serves 4
- More effort
Nutrition per serving
- kcal 789
- fat 50g
- saturates 16g
- carbs 63g
- sugars 28g
- fibre 10g
- protein 19g
- salt 2g
- 6 beetroots (about 750g), roughly the same size, scrubbed and trimmed but not peeled
- 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- 4 tbsp olive oil, plus 2 tsp
- 2 tsp coriander seeds
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 5 onions, peeled, halved and finely sliced
- 320g pack rolled all-butter puff pastry
- 1 tbsp harissa
- 2 tsp sherry vinegar
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 tsp nigella seeds
- ½ x 200g block vegetarian feta, crumbled
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp tahini
- juice 1 lemon
- 1 tbsp clear honey
- 3 red chicory, sliced
- 100g bag watercress
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Rub the beetroots and garlic cloves with 2 tsp olive oil. Wrap in a double layer of foil, adding 5 tbsp water into the package. Place in an ovenproof dish and bake for 2 hrs or until tender. Test them by inserting a small sharp knife. When the beetroot is cool enough to handle, gently rub off the skins. Set aside, saving the garlic cloves.
Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan. Toast the coriander seeds for a few mins until aromatic, then grind using a pestle and mortar. Toast the cumin seeds, leave them whole and mix in with the coriander.
Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan, add the onions, toasted spices and some seasoning. Cook very gently for 30 mins or until the onions are soft and golden.
Unroll the pastry and cut out 4 large circles using a 12cm cookie cutter (or use a small sharp knife to score round a bowl or plate). Place the pastry circles on a baking- parchment-lined baking sheet. Gently score a 1cm border around each and prick the centre area with a fork. Bake in the oven for 10-15 mins. Meanwhile, mix the harissa, vinegar and remaining 1 tbsp olive oil in a small bowl. Thinly slice the beetroot. Remove the pastry bases from the oven and carefully press down the middle areas with the back of a spoon to flatten.
Squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins and stir into the onions. Spread this mixture evenly into the tarts, then layer on the beetroot slices in a circular pattern, slightly overlapping them. Brush the harissa mix onto the beetroot, then brush the egg on the border and sprinkle with the nigella seeds. Bake in the oven for a further 12-15 mins until the pastry is cooked and golden.
To make the salad, whisk together the extra virgin olive oil, tahini, lemon juice, honey, seasoning and 1 tbsp water. Toss the chicory and watercress in the dressing. Remove the tart from the oven, scatter over the feta and serve alongside the leaves.