If you’ve ever asked me what I like about Thanksgiving, why it’s my favorite holiday, or what I do to prepare, you’ve heard this before: Thanksgiving is far and away my favorite holiday. There is no pressure, there are no secular or non-secular expectations, it’s the “before” to the holiday season so vacation is still ahead, and the food. And the food. Did I say the food? I love Thanksgivings when anyone and everyone eats together. Since vacation is around the corner, so many folks stay in town. Nobody gets turned away. I got to host many friends and some family again this year.
I made a few dishes, the first one being this lovely savory tart. This was my favorite savory crust so far and the toppings were a nice addition that I could get at the farmers’ market. Must remember this one for next year, or anytime between now and then.
60 grams sorghum
80 grams mochiko rice flour
95 grams brown rice flour
85 grams tapioca flour
1 1/2 teaspoons guar gum
1 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons butter (or earth spread)
4 Tablespoons shortening or lard
2 eggs, beaten plus 1 egg for brushing
6-8 Tablespoons ice water
extra mochiko for rolling the dough
To form the crust:
In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients with a fork. Cut the butter and shortening into chunks and add. Use your fingers to break apart the butter into the dry ingredients, as you would a pie crust. When it resembles sand, add the 2 beaten eggs and mix with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon at a time of the water until the dough presses together easily in your finger tips.
Wrap the dough in saran wrap and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours or overnight.
5 slices pancetta, diced*
4 Tablespoons olive oil
6 cups sliced leeks (about 3 large leeks)
2 1/2 cups diced zucchini (about 2 medium zucchini)
2 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
pinches of salt
extra olive oil for drizzling
3 sprigs thyme
To make the filling:
In a large skillet, cook the pancetta until cooked but not yet crisped. Remove from the pot and set aside. Add the olive oil to the same pot and heat. Add the leeks and a pinch of and saute over low-medium heat until very soft (about 20-25 minutes).
While the leeks are melting, heat the oven to to 400. Toss the zucchini with 1 teaspoon olive oil, a pinch of salt, and roast for just about 20 minutes (soft but not browned). Remove from the oven and set aside.
Heat oven to 350. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let sit for 15-20 minutes at room temperature. Roll the dough out between 2 pieces of wax paper. Sprinkle both sides of the dough with the rice flour before rolling. When the dough is about 1/4-inch thick, place it on a cookie sheet. Fold dough in about 1 inch to create a border. Brush the sides liberally with the extra egg.
Spread leeks in a thick layer over the crust. Then add the zucchini, the tomatoes, and lastly the pancetta. Sprinkle with a dash of good salt, a drizzle of olive oil, and the sprigs of thyme. Bake in the oven for approximately 25-30 minutes or until tomatoes are nice and soft and the crust is slightly browned. Turn the oven to broil for an additional 3-4 minutes to crisp those tomatoes and pancetta.
Let cool slightly and then slice as you would a pizza. Serve hot.
*You can easily make this vegetarian by holding off on the pancetta.