Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Strawberry Basil Tarts

strawberry basil tarts

It was my birthday on Sunday and since then I have been showered in kitchen-related gifts. Cuisinarts and pasta makers and cast iron casserole dishes and bundt pans! Oh my! Thoroughly spoiled. It's hard to decide what to use first.

So what do I have for you tonight? A quick dessert that required not one of my new kitchen items. Because I'm just crazy like that.

Have you had strawberries and basil together? I was worried. I knew they compliment each other, but I wondered if maybe the boundary of that marriage was somewhere way back in Salad Land. And I was shooting for a trip to Dessert Ville. I shouldn't have worried. These were lovely. I even went further out on a limb and added a bit of black pepper and still they were sweet and a great finish to our evening meal. They would be even better with some whipped cream or cashew cream or custard or whatever creamy, fatty thing you happen to like. I tried to make the sweet cashew cream from Vegan Brunch to go with mine, but I misread the recipe and... well, no need to talk about what resulted. That's between me and the compost bin.

Strawberry Basil Tarts

six pre-made tart shells (I used circles of store-bought puff pastry)
1 cup strawberries, sliced fairly small
1 heaping tablespoon of basil leaves, chopped into tiny pieces (with a few left for garnish)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Bake the pastry shells, if needed.

Mix strawberries, basil, syrup, and pepper together and let sit for five minutes.

Fill tart shells with strawberry mixture. Top with cream if you choose. Garnish with basil leaves.

Eat promptly.

Some Notes:

-This is one of the many fruit-based desserts I've made as a result of going almost entirely sugar free for the past month. So it's not that sweet. If you're looking for super sweet you'll have to go elsewhere or just wait until I have a special occasion that necessitates the use of my new bundt pan.

-I know, I know. Store-bought pastry? I just haven't mastered crust yet. Leave me alone.

-Apologies if my photos aren't up to their usual standards for the next little while. My camera is in the shop and the chirpy lady at the photo place told me that it could take up to six weeks for it to be fixed and back in my hands. So I'm using a borrowed camera that has fewer megapixels and controls that are foreign to me. That's not to say I don't appreciate the loan, Mom and Dad! I do! I just wanted to explain why the photo end of things around here might be a little different over the next few weeks.



selina said...

ooh those sound delicious. makes me kinda sad strawberry season is over!

whatever camera you used to take this picture... it's a beautiful picture!

•¦Amy¦• said...

ooooh! i love this blog what a wonderful place!

i'm going to have to start trying out these recipes. while i am not a vegan or a vegetarian i've always prefered the cusine more than that of us carnivores, maybe someday i will become one! these recipes just look too good to be true, and i love glad to have found your blog :)

Asteroidea Press said...

Have I not passed along Steve's gluten free pie crust? Because there's no gluten in it, you can just start over when you mess up. I.e. you cannot mess it up. And it tastes quite good, too.

I make it with shortening, so it's vegan.

me said...

these are beautiful! I just saw little vegan pastry shells in the store yesterday and was thinking of different things to fill them with. My natural inclination would be something dark chocolatey, but this looks even better! thanks! I can't wait to make them!

Jill said...

You should try making a strawberry and basil smoothie. It's surprisingly delicious. Toss a cup of strawberries in with a cup or two of basil, add some water and ice cubes, and blend away.

J. said...

Thanks Selina! Thanks Amy!

Megan- I think I want to try pastry made from ground nuts. That will be my next project!

ME- good luck with your tarts!

Jill- I'll give it a try!