About a year ago my beautiful man and I began to take a closer look at what we were putting into our bodies and that of our babies. Although we ate quite well we knew that in order to drink in all their is out of this life we knew we needed to nourish our bodies better. Investigations were made and much reading was done. Sinister additives were revealed as tins and packets were upturned for supermarket perusal. A bountiful and utterly inspiring Wholefoods course was devoured and a pantry overhaul was undertaken. Opting for the "bandaid" approach (i.e. brace yourself and rip it off as fast as possible) we culled packets, jars, and tins of the overly processed variety and passed them onto charity.
Slowly and ever so mindfully our Mother Hubbard's cupboard has blossomed with many jars of earth hued pulses, seeds and flours. Words such as amaranth, quinoa and kuzo have joined our culinary repertoire and meals are always cooked from scratch. It has been a wonderful yet topsy turvey journey of developing palates, turned up noses (ours included!) and an at times overwhelming choice of ingredients and methods. This pilgrimage is far from over. As with all great learning I believe it will never end.
It is however, when bellies are rumbling and time is poor that things can often unravel in this wholefood world. I am still an infant in the preparation of beans; the soaking, the cooking and meal planning has become a necessity rather than an organisational fad I might be going through. It is at these times when the meat is still frozen solid that I reach for this recipe. A wonderfully crisp, light pastry filled with snips of this or that and a luscious egg custard. Adorned with nought more than baby spinach and olives it is a delicious and nourishing meal we devour time and time again.
What nourishing standbys do you regularly reach for?
This is the first of a series of posts I've been working on exploring our wholefoods journey. I look forward to sharing them with you. The recipe comes from An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler - a book that quite simply changed my culinary world.
Olive Oil Tart Dough
2 1/2 cups of flour (I use white spelt)
1/3 best possible olive oil
1/2 cup of ice water
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl adding more ice water if the dough doesn't stay together. Divide the dough in half and roll each into a ball. One ball can be refrigerated for a week or frozen for six months. Chill the other ball for half an hour and heat the oven to 200 degrees. When chilled, remove the dough and roll it into a 1/2 centimetre thick round on a floured bench. Lightly grease a 9 inch tart tin and. Crumple a sheet of baking paper and then line the tart tin. Fill with baking beads or dried beans or rice. Blind bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove the beads and paper and bake for another 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven.
We fill our tart with whatever is to hand. Some nights it may be free range bacon, corn from the cob and grated parmesan. Others it will be leftover roast vegetables and chunks of feta. 2-3 eggs and a good dollop of cream are whisked together to make the binding custard. Baked for 15-20 minutes until the top is golden and crisping and the middle holds a hint of wobble.