You can definitely tell it’s Spring here in California. The weather has finally turned the corner (I think) and the days are getting longer. I love it when it’s still light out past 7 o’clock. I just feel like I get so much more accomplished.
I’ve got my garden in and, as far as I’m concerned, the tomatoes and cucumbers can’t come in soon enough. Of course wait until July when I’m freaking out that I’ve got 20 pounds of tomatoes and don’t know what to do with them anymore.
The other way I know the seasons are changing…I was at the Farmer’s Market and noticed that I was completely overdressed. Khaki cropped pants and a long sleeve T is now the equivalent of a nun’s habit (apparently). I’m not sure when the market turned the corner (as in street corner) but it must have happened while I was on one of my recent trips out of town because it wasn’t always like this. The new dress code is high heel wedges, short skirt or shorts, tight t or tank top and completely done hair and makeup. And this is the current dress code for those over 30.
When did the Farmer’s Market turn into the local ‘meet’ market? While there aren’t many single men that frequent the market, the one’s who do are usually pretty fit looking specimens. My guess is that they are either personal trainers or guys who work out a lot. So I suppose that’s part of the draw for the preening post prom queen set. But have they ever heard the saying “stop trying so hard?” Plus, the fact that they are 10-15 years older than most of these guys does nothing to convince us that they’re not desperate for attention.
That being said, the other sign of Spring is lots of asparagus and leeks at the market. So I couldn’t resist putting the two together and making this gluten free vegan tart. Stop freaking out about the gluten free and vegan labels. This tastes so good no one will know it’s actually good for them, or you.
Ladies, stop trying so damn hard! I’m not saying to go out of the house looking like a slob, but when you primp and pimp yourself out to look like you’re trying to pick someone up it just looks bad…really bad. Relax and enjoy yourself in your surroundings. The more comfortable you appear to be the more approachable you are to others.
Buckwheat Crust Recipe
- 1 Cup Buckwheat Flour
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Cup + 1 Tablespoon Solid Vegetable Shortening (Non-Hydrogenated)
- 2 1/4 Tablespoons Water
Vegan Sauce Recipe
- 2 Cups Chopped Cauliflower (1 medium head)
- 5 Cloves Garlic
- 1/2 Cup Olive Oil + more for drizzling
- 1/2 Lemon Juiced
- Kosher/Sea Salt
Asparagus and Leek Filling
- 2 Cups Asparagus (cut to 1″ pieces)
- 2 Cups Leek (white and light green parts only cut to 1/4″ pieces)
- 5 Thyme Sprigs (leaves stripped)
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- Kosher/Sea Salt
- Hazelnut Oil (for drizzling)*
For Buckwheat Crust: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Farenheit. Stir flour and salt together. Cut in shortening until dough forms crumbs (should look like wet sand). Add water and mix until dough forms. Depending on the humidity, you may need to add additional water. If so, add 1/2 tablespoon at a time until dough forms. Be careful not to over mix. (This dough will have the consistency of wet sand, it won’t come together and be stretchy like a regular pie dough.)
Spoon the buckwheat dough into a 9″ tart pan and press to cover bottom of pan. Then add dough to the sides, pressing it together like you did on the bottom. Gently prick the bottom and sides of the dough with a fork.
Line the dough with parchment paper and fill the bottom with dried beans or rice. Bake for 15-20 minutes. (The crust may slightly pull away from the sides of the pan. Let cool for 20 minutes, then remove parchment paper and beans or rice. Let crust thoroughly cool before adding filling.
For Vegan Sauce: Keep the oven at 425 degrees Farenheit.
Spread chopped cauliflower and garlic on baking sheet.
Drizzle olive oil onto the vegetables and mix well to thoroughly coat. Sprinkle with kosher/sea salt.
Roast in oven for 40-45 minutes. Vegetables should be brown on edges and slightly softened.
Pour roasted cauliflower and garlic into a blender and add lemon juice. While blender is running, drizzle olive oil into the mixture. Sauce should have a thick, but still pourable consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste (remember that there is also some salt in the crust as well as additional salt and pepper in the filling)
For the Asparagus and Leek Filling: Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a large saute pan over medium high heat. Once oil is hot, add asparagus and leeks to the pan. Add a pinch of salt and a couple of grinds of black pepper. Stir the vegetables as they cook. Keep stirring while they cook so that they don’t burn. Cook until they begin to soften (approximately 5-7 minutes). Remove from heat.
Assembling the Tart: Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees Farenheit.
Once the crust has cooled, pour enough of the roasted cauliflower sauce to cover the bottom of the crust. (there will be some sauce left over) Do not completely fill the crust to the top.
Spread the asparagus and leek filling over the top of the sauce. Make sure that vegetables are spread evenly.
Lightly drizzle with hazelnut oil.
Bake for 15 minutes.