butternut squash tart

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roasted butternut squash in a rich parmesan-cream custard and encased in a flaky buttery crust.

adapted from a recipe on epicurious.com for which i boosted up the flavor a couple of notches adding more herbs and spices, increasing the salt just a bit and broiling instead of frying the butternut squash.

to be used with the pâte brisée dough or store-bought puff pastry.
Ingredients
2 oz (1 cup) finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 cup heavy cream
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
butternut prep
3/4 lb butternut squash
1 1/2 tsp dried sage
1/4 tsp nutmeg, grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
special equipment
baking dish, 8 x 2-inch square baking dish,
small, heavy-bottomed saucepan
fine-mesh sieve or colander lined with double-layer cheesecloth
 
Directions
1. prepare the pâte brisée dough, roll-out dough 4 inches larger than bottom of pan to allow for sides and 1/2-inch overhang. press into baking pan and fold overhang inwards and press against pan to reinforce edges of pastry shell. line with foil or parchment paper and fill up with pie weights or beans. pre-bake per recipe.
2. bring cheese and cream just to a boil in a small heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally. remove from heat and steep, covered, 30 minutes.
3. preheat oven to 325ºF.
4. while cream steeps, peel, seed, and cut butternut squash into 1/2-inch pieces. toss squash with sage, nutmeg, salt, pepper and olive oil in a pan that's large enough to not crowd the squash. broil 'til squash begins to brown, stirring every 5 minutes to ensure even broiling.
5. whisk together whole egg, yolk and salt in a small bowl until combined. pour in steeped cream through a fine-mesh sieve pressing hard on cheese curds. remove cheese curds and set aside (yummy, spread on toast). whisk mixture until smooth.
6. scatter squash evenly in tart shell and pour custard over. bake until custard is just set and golden in patches, 30 to 35 minutes. cool tart in pan on rack at least 20 minutes.
7. cut into 32 pieces: halve crosswise and lengthwise, and divide each quarter into 8 pieces.
 
Notes:
sub 1/2 shortening in the pastry dough for a lower fat option and a more tender crust.

sub a béchamel or crème anglaise, sans baking, for the custard recipe to compare texture to the cream recipe.
Categories:
Meal   DinnerDish   Appetizer
Cooking Method   BakedMain Ingredient   Vegetables
Style   Gourmet 
Features   Low-Fat, Low-Sodium, Vegetarian




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