Total Time: Just over two hours, most of which was down time
Source: The New Family Cookbook (but can also be found in ATK’s Mediterranean and Vegetarian cookbooks with a different crust)
Last month, we bought a tart pan so that we could make the mushroom version of this tart. I’ve never really liked mushrooms, but I have been learning to appreciate them. The picky boy hates mushrooms but was in California with his dad, so it went on the list of things to make while he was gone. It was amazing, so when I was flipping through The New Family Cookbook and saw the same three tarts as I’ve seen in other ATK cookbooks – tomato, zucchini, and mushroom – but with a different crust, I decided to try out the zucchini one.
This crust was an olive oil and parmesan crust, which sounded lovely. It didn’t come together as well as the previous crust, though, and didn’t match the textural description in the recipe. Maybe I did something wrong. It formed an adequate crust, but the pieces of dough that you press into the pan didn’t quite come together, so I was left with little cracks along the base. The layer of parmesan sprinkled on the base and baked before filling the crust filled in some of those gaps, but also meant that the crust was baked longer and got a little crispy on the edges.
The tart itself was tasty, though much simpler than the mushroom tart. The zucchini nearly disappeared into the cheese, but paired well when I noticed it. Avoiding the extra parmesan in the crust would likely tone down the cheesiness a bit and allow for the zucchini to shine a bit more, which is another reason I think I prefer the crust suggested in the other cookbooks. The boys called it cheese pizza and ate it as they would cheese pizza, with the picky one saying he didn’t notice the zucchini, so he liked it. It serves four better than it serves five, but then you wouldn’t get the pleasure of figuring out how to cut a circle into five near-equal pieces (I was super proud of what I accomplished). All in all, it’s a nice low-maintenance summer-y dish for a day when you’re around the house and can check on things every 10-15 minutes but don’t want something too hands-on, like when you’re making grocery lists and watching Bing Crosby movies on a Saturday afternoon.