From the garden: No-dough, no-bake summertime tarts

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The most prolific tomato plant we have is our cherry tomato bush that sits outside our back door. And these little babies are so sweet and juicy; they’re perfect for a sweet-savory summer tomato tart.

I love tarts: fruit tarts, veggie tarts, layered lasagna tarts … mmmm. Plus, they’re the epitome of summer.

What I don’t like is the flour and butter of the traditional tart crust. If you feel the same then try out this No-dough, no-bake tart shell that is made from ground nuts and dates. It’s delicious! And bonus, it’s super fast and easy to throw together. Here we go >>

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I made two versions of this tart shell: one version with pine nuts, which will be the basis of my savory-ish tomato tart, and one with macadamia nuts for a sweet nectarine tart.

Step 1: Process the nuts of your choice with a pinch of salt to a medium grind.

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Step 2: Add Medjool dates and continue to grind until you have a slightly finer grind, but be careful not to grind too long or it will release too much oil.

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Because I was trying to use up several different veggies (before they go bad) I decided to make several small tarts rather one big one.

I love these little 4-inch tart pans. Make sure your pans have a removable bottom for easy release once you’re done.

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Step 3: Press the nut mixture into the tart pan.

There. That’s it. Easy, huh? I think that took all of five minutes. FIVE minutos! Five. Count ’em. CINCO. Minutos.

And it’s delicious. And it’s healthy for you. And it’s raw, which is considered even more healthy for you. Win. Win. Win.

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Then fill the tart with whatever makes you happy. I was lazy, so I just put a little layer of vegan cream cheese on the bottom. Otherwise, whip up some custard or pudding or lay down a little cheese … whatever you want. Next time, I’m going to use some pesto, which I think would taste fantastic with this pine nut tart shell. I didn’t think of it at the time, despite the fact that I just froze a year’s worth of fresh pesto. Duh.

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Anyway, since I’m just using what I have on hand from the garden, I’m going with a simple tomato and zucchini combo.

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Saute them for only ONE minute (no need to cook this too long, you just want it to soften slightly) with some very thinly sliced onions and garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes. If you want a little more flavor depth add a splash of balsamic vinegar. I omitted the vinegar because I wanted to enjoy the natural sweetness and flavors of the veggies.

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Layer your sauteed veggies in the tart and sprinkle with fresh rosemary.

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If you do dairy then definitely add some crumbled feta, a glob of goat cheese or shaved aged Parmesan and pop it in the oven for ten minutes. If you’re into meat then some cubed ham would be fantastic.

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You’re done! Fast, easy, healthy and super tasty.

Enjoy!

No-Dough, No-bake Tart Shell
Makes 1 standard 10-inch tart

2 cups nuts of your choice (If making a sweet tart then I highly recommend macadamia nuts, however, they’ll all work well.)
pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup Medjool dates

1. In the food processor chop nuts and pinch of salt for 10 seconds.

2. Add dates and continue to process another 10 seconds.

3. Press mixture into a tart pan. Refrigerate until ready to use.

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2 responses »

  1. LOVE this tart shell idea!!! Even as a baker/pastry chef, I need to reduce my consumption of grain based carbs. This tart shell looks like a yummy alternative. Have you ever baked a tart in the shell (like a quiche?).

    • Hey Stacey, Unfortunately, no, I haven’t baked a quiche in one of these because I don’t eat eggs anymore, but it’s certainly worth trying. I have baked them for about 10 minutes at 250F, which works fine. Although generally, I think it’s best used raw so that you can maintain the natural oils to keep the shell together. Plus, raw maintains the full nutrient content of the food, which would be healthier for you.

      But if you do some more experimentation, let me know what happens.

      And I cannot say enough about the macadamia nut tart shell for fruit tarts. Holy Yum!

      Big hugs, mic

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