I’ve rearranged a few priorities in my life.
First, I’m eating more vegetables. Kale, squash… those are both great.
Second, I’m trying to consume less fatty cuts of meat. In this tart, I opt to use pancetta over bacon. It’s the healthy choice.
Third, I’m eating more butter. Making this tart dough on a regular basis is definitely a good life choice.
Alright, this last one should probably be removed from my priority list. Baby steps.
Anyway, I’m starting off the new year with a healthy perspective, and from here on out I’ll try to cut back on things like sweets and fried foods. Promise.
…except for the recipe I’ll post in a few days about zucchini fritters. Is it still considered bad if you’re frying up veggies?!
Preheat an oven to 425 F.
After making the dough and placing in a fridge to rest for half an hour, peel and remove seeds from a small butternut squash. Cut into cubes, then place in a medium bowl and toss with olive oil, fresh minced garlic, salt, and pepper. Mix thoroughly, then transfer to a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until fork tender (time may vary depending on the size of your butternut squash cubes).
Next, crisp up some pancetta (Italian bacon) in a sauté pan.
When pancetta is fully cooked, remove from the pan (leaving the oil), and set in a bowl lined with paper towels.
Bring the same sauté pan (with the remaining pancetta fat) to medium-high heat, then add the chopped kale.
Season with salt and pepper, then add half a cup of vegetable or chicken broth and a splash of cider vinegar. Cook for about 5 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Look at that color!
Roll out the chilled tart dough and place on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. It’s fine if the ends hang over the side.
Spread some taleggio cheese (or whichever kind you prefer) around the dough, leaving the outer 1 1/2″ clear.
Throw everything else on top: pancetta, roasted squash, and lots of kale.
Fold the edges over on top of the dough, then brush the outer circle with some egg wash. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the dough has turned a nice golden brown color.
Dinner could not be any easier.
And, roughly speaking, it’s on the healthy side! You know, besides the butter in the dough and the few ounces of pancetta we used…
Things I like about this tart:
(1) The dough (how many times can I say this dough is worth making?)
(2) Crispy, salty pancetta
(3) Sweet, creamy roasted butternut squash
(4) Kale that’s no longer bitter (thanks to the stock and vinegar), but has turned deliciously crunchy in the oven… almost like a chip!
(5) And my favorite part: the taleggio. It’s kind of funky, like bleu cheese, but not as stinky. Does that make sense? It adds the perfect tang to this dish, and I adore it.
Things I don’t like:
(1) We were hungry and only got 4 portions out of this.
* To make vegetarian, simply leave out the pancetta.
Kale, Taleggio, and Butternut Squash Tart
*Recipe adapted from Dramatic Pancake.
Yields: 4 – 6 servings
Time: 45 minutes prep, plus 40 minutes in an oven
- 1 tart dough (recipe here)
- 1 small butternut squash
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 oz. pancetta, cubed
- 1/2 bunch kale, chopped
- 1/2 cup vegetable or chicken stock
- Splash of cider vinegar (or whatever you have on hand)
- Taleggio cheese
- 1 egg, beaten
- Prepare tart dough according to recipe, and place in a refrigerator to rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat an oven to 425 F. Peel and remove seeds from butternut squash, then cut into small cubes. Place in a medium bowl and toss with minced garlic, olive oil, 1/2 tbsp salt, and 1/4 tbsp black pepper. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until fork tender. (Cooking time will vary depending on the size of your squash cubes.) When finished, set squash aside and lower oven temperature to 375 F.
- Heat a skillet over medium-high heat, then add cubed pancetta. Cook until crispy, then remove and place in a paper-towel lined bowl or plate.
- Using the same skillet (and the pancetta grease), cook the kale over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, then add 1/2 a cup of vegetable or chicken stock and a splash of cider vinegar.
- Cook until the liquid has evaporated, then set aside.
- Remove the tart dough from the refrigerator. Roll out into a 12″ – 14″ circle. Spread as much taleggio cheese on the surface of the dough as you’d like, making sure to leave the outer 1 1/2″ clear.
- Sprinkle on top the crispy pancetta, the roasted squash, and lots of fresh kale (note necessarily in that order).
- Bake at 375 F for approximately 40 minutes, or until the dough turns a nice golden brown.
*To make vegetarian, simply leave out the pancetta.