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Grilled zucchini tartelettes with walnut crusts

Posted May 14 2009 5:05pm

I'm really enjoying working in the garden again! I don't have zucchini (courgette) yet in the garden, but organic zucchini's are sold at a good price now so I couldn't wait to make a zucchini post already. If you have a garden it's an easy vegetable to grow and just one or two plants will give you enough harvest for a whole season.

I especially like zucchini when they're grilled, which makes them sweet and gives them more flavour. Here I wanted to make a recipe where the taste of grilled zucchini is combined with tomato sauce and walnuts. I also didn't want to use tofu, so this is what turned out. These tartelettes are rich in taste and if you're a zucchini lover as I am, you'll like them very much. If you like to know what you're eating like I do, here is some information about zucchini's and walnuts:

Zucchini contains manganese, vitamin C, folate, pottasium, vitamin A, magnesium. Most of that goodness is found in the skin.

Walnuts provide omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and phytosterols. Research shows that all of these have cancer-slowing effects. Walnuts are also good for the heart and reducing bad cholesterol levels.

Hope everyone had a nice relaxing Easter break!

This recipe makes six tartelettes:

60 g (1/2 cup) walnuts
45 g (1/2 cup) oatmeal (havermout)
80 g (2/3 cup) whole wheat flour
1/4 full tsp salt
60 ml (1/4 cup) canola oil (koolzaadolie)
60 ml (1/4 cup) water

2 tbl rich olive oil
2 tbl tomato paste
1/2 clove garlic
1/4 tsp salt (Himalaya salt)
1/2 tsp apple vinegar

zucchini (courgette), cut in pieces
20 g (1/4 cup) walnuts, chopped in small pieces

preheat the oven to 180 C

Place the walnuts in the oven. Roast them for about 5 to 10 minutes. Watch that they don't burn and take them out of the oven as soon as they begin to aromatize.

Now peel the walnuts. I do this if I want a refined walnut taste which is what I want in this crust. To peel them rub the nuts against the sides of a sieve. This is an easy way to remove some of the walnut peel. Of course it's impossible to get rid of all the peel, but that's okay. Just removing some of the peel is enough.

Turn on the grill and place the zucchini under the grill. Sprinkle some oil and a little salt on the zucchini's before placing them under the grill. Grill them lightly and when ready set them aside.

Now preheat the oven again to 180 C.

Place the oatmeal in the food processor and blend inot a course flour. Add the walnuts and turn the machine on shortly, just to chop the nuts in small pieces. I don't want the walnuts to be blended into a fine meal because I like to have a little crunch in my crust.

Now place the oatmeal walnut mixture in a bowl and add the other dry ingredients. Pour in the canola oil and mix the oil into the flour. Add the water and mix together until you have a dough. Set aside.

To make the tomato sauce you need a pestle and mortar. Crush the garlic together with the course salt. Keep rubbing the two in the mortar until the garlic is completely crushed.

Add the olive oil and continue to work all the ingredients together. Now add the tomato paste, vinegar and pepper. Mix well and taste if you need to add more salt, pepper or vinegar. The sauce may be strong tasting to balance with the rest of the quiche. It's important to use a rich tasting olive oil to get the best result.

Now continue to make the crust. Take your tartelette forms and grease them. Divide the dough in six balls and press them into the forms. Work with wet fingers, working from the middle up the sides of the form, creating a thin even crust.

Spread the tomato sauce on the bottom of the crusts:

Then place the grilled zucchini pieces on top of the tomato sauce. Garnish the tartelettes with the chopped walnut pieces:

Place in the oven. Lower the shelf in the oven if necessary so that the tartelettes bake evenly. The tartelettes are ready when the crust is golden brown, which takes about 25 minutes.
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