Main Dishes

Vegetable Arty Tart

June 8, 2012

Carrying on from my Rose Apple Tarts, I decided to make a similar savoury version using bright coloured vegetables – courgettes, carrots and aubergines. It turned out to be very pretty, but it did take a lot of work and patience! It’s a good one to make if you have a glut of vegetables in the summer, and a bit of time on your hands :)

For this tart, you could equally experiment with different fillings (e.g. an egg/quiche filling) and a variety of other vegetables (e.g. butternut squash, beetroot etc.) There are so many exciting colour, flavour and texture combinations you can play around with for this tart. There are similar recipes on the web, but this one is my own tri colour version. It’s a recipe I think that has a lot of potential and I look forward to experimenting a bit more. I think miniature ones with beetroot and goats cheese would be great as a starter, and also might take bit less work. Some of the tougher vegetables like beetroot, you may need to blanch/ par cook. I’ll just have to experiment and see.

Here’s how:


  • 6oz of plain white flour, sieved
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 oz of butter, chopped into small pieces
  • a few drops of cold water
  • beaten egg white (optional)

Cream filling

  • 2oog of mozzarella
  • 200g of sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • pepper to taste
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of paprika

Vegetable filling

  • 1 medium courgette, top and bottom stalk removed
  • 1 medium aubergine, top stalk removed
  • 2/3 peeled carrots
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil

Place the sieved flour into a large bowl. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs. Take a fork and add just a few drops of water to bring the mixture into a ball of pastry. Place the ball of pastry in Clingfilm or plastic bag and leave to rest in the fridge for at least thirty minutes.

Pre -heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease a 9 inch flan tin with butter. Once the pastry has rested, place it on a floured work surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it into an 11 inch circle. Carefully place the pastry into the tin and rest in the fridge for a further 5 minutes.

Take the pastry out of the fridge, and gently prick the base with a fork. Line the pastry case with greaseproof paper and fill it baking beads. Place in the oven and bake blind for 15-20 minutes. Once barely golden in colour, remove from the oven and leave to cool and set. If you want to maintain a crisper base, you can brush the base with beaten egg white.

For the filling, break up the mozzarella into small pieces and mix with the sour cream. Beat well with a wooden spoon, and then stir in the seasoning. You can add more seasoning if desired. It’s quiet a blank canvas, so if you fancy spicing it up with chilli powder, or giving it an Italian flavour with oregano – then do so.

Meanwhile, using a mandolin / slicer/ sharp knife – cut the vegetables into thin strips. Once you have them all sliced, place them on a level surface to see if there is much difference in the height. If so, chop off any edges so they are all roughly the same height. Place them all flat on a plate and season well with salt and pepper.

Next fill the pre cooked pastry case with the cheese and sour cream filling. On a chopping board, roll one strip of carrot into a tight circle, then wrap a strip of courgette, around that followed by a strip of aubergine. You may need a second pair of hands with this. I had the help of the OH. Repeat with the same pattern until your circle of rolled vegetables is roughly 9 inches in diameter. With two hands, carefully lift the circle of vegetables and gently lay it into the cheese and sour cream filling. Season again and brush with olive oil. Place in the oven (190 degrees Celsius) for 40-50 minutes. I covered with tinfoil near the end to prevent it burning. Serve as a main with a salad or as a side vegetable dish. It is quiet a bland tart, so there is plenty of scope to spice this recipe up a bit. I was bit timid first time out!

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  • Móna Wise

    This looks amazing! What a labour of love Vicky!
    I would not have the patience to make it so pretty – and I am certain it tasted fab!

    • Vicky

      Thanks Mona, I was half way through making it when I reaslised that I could have done mini tartlets, which would have been a whole lot easier! I guess you live and learn. Hope newly published life is treating you and Ron well.

  • Debs @ The Spanish Wok

    Fantastic, an impressive looking tart and I love the sour cream & moz filling too as I had the eggy mixture of a quiche.

    Have pinned for another day, thanks.

    You are welcome to join in my monthly food blogger event THE SOUP KITCHEN, here offering a new theme each month. All bloggers are welcome, hope to see you participate soon.

  • Katie

    Wow, this is so beautiful! A total show stopper. I can imagine so many different combinations of beautifully coloured vegetables in a tart like this. Thanks for the recipe!

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much, I’m already looking forward to trying it out with Beetroot. Thanks for your comment.

  • sara

    WOW, that is insanely cool! So beautiful!! :)

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much Sara.

  • Lissy

    Looks like delicious art :)

    • Vicky

      Thanks Lissy :)

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci)

    Hi Vicky, I found you via Foodgawker. I just had to come comment on your tart – the presentation is simply stunning! I don’t know if I would have the patience needed to assemble it, but I’d love to try!

    • Vicky

      Hi Laura, thanks so much for stopping by and thanks for your lovely comment.

  • Winnie

    This is a gorgeous looking tart
    Beautiful job

    • Vicky

      Thank you.

  • Joan Nova

    I saw this on Pinterest and just had to swing by and see the post. Love it!

  • stasty

    Thank you Joan. I love Pinterest myself, it’s a great source of inspiration.

  • Sharon

    Wow, this looks absolutely amazing. I’ve booked marked it and will try some mini tarts.

    • Vicky

      Thank you Sharon. hope it works well for you.

  • Stef

    Wow. That looks stunning.

    • Vicky

      Thank you Stef.

  • David (@Kitchen72)

    Love it – so pretty

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much David! High praise indeed, as your food always looks amazingly pretty.

  • Kristin

    Absolutely stunning!

  • S’tasty Cook

    Thank you Kristin, was sorry to miss you last week at the Po Boy day :(

  • KW

    This was good, and fun to make. I used strained Greek yoghurt instead of sour cream because that’s what I’m used to and added some pine nuts and feta cheese to the filling. Gave it a little bit of a tartness and didn’t taste plain to me.

    • Vicky

      Hi, that’s great. The pine cheese and feta sound like a delicious alternative to the mozzarella, I must try that combination, thanks.

  • Alessandra

    I don’t think that I could mix mozzarella with sour cream, but the look of the tart is great, I love it!


    • Vicky

      Hi Alessandra, you could always use feta and pine nuts like (See comments below). The filling really is a matter of taste, but there are lots of possibilities. Thanks for stopping by.

  • demon

    tasty to the eyes… yumm

    • Vicky

      Thank you. Really enjoying all your artistic cakes on your blog.

  • branny

    You did a fantastic job. Almost too pretty to eat.

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much Branny. Loving all the veggie dishes on your blog.

  • Sonali- The Foodie Physician

    I saw this on TasteSpotting and was blown away! I had to come by to see more of this amazing creation. Simply incredible!

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much Sonali, just reading your blog now. Your story is so interesting. Really looking forward to reading more. Thanks for stopping by.

      • Sonali- The Foodie Physician

        My pleasure Vicky and thanks back at ya! Just wanted to let you know that I shared a picture of your tart on my FB page and it got a great response!

  • Laura @ Blogging Over Thyme

    This tart is beautiful, it truly is a work of art!

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much Laura. Just looking at your post about your last week in culinary school, sounds great.

  • brighteyedbaker

    I wanted to tell you that this tart is such a work of art, but then I realized that someone else already said that. Still, though, that’s the perfect way to say it; this really embodies the idea of food in art form. So beautiful, inspiring, fresh, and delicious, I’m sure!

    • Vicky

      Thank you very much. I have just discovered your blog and look forward to reading more. Looks great.

  • ATasteOfMadness

    This is a work of art! I’m blown away right now. This looks perfect!

    • Vicky

      Thanks so much Cathleen.

  • thyme (sarah)

    Just Wow! How fun would that be to bring to the table. I love when dishes take a creative and fun twist…or “swirl” like this one! Beautiful.

  • Ellen

    Looks great; can’t wait to try it. Can you tell me what you mean by 2/3 carrots? Is that two or three carrots?

    • Vicky

      Hi Ellen, thanks for stopping by.Yes, I used 2 carrots, but they were rather big carrots. So three small carrots would work equally well. Hope that helps. Vicky

  • meatballs & milkshakes

    Wow, so beautiful! I’m not sure I have the patience to recreate it, but bravo!

    • Vicky

      Thanks, it wasn’t too difficult, once I had them all sliced up and all my fingers were still intact 😉

  • lynn @ the actor’s diet


  • Peter

    “Your own tri colour version” looks a lot like Lakshmi’s tri colour version – :-)

    • Vicky

      Hi Peter, thanks for your comment. You’re completely right, there are a few of these on the web and this is just my take on it. However my recipe has different elements and is made slightly different to others. I still haven’t found any recipe that requires you to cook the pastry blind, which I think is an important factor to stop the base going soggy.

  • Julio

    Wow! Biutiful. You have a big creativit. And I think that the taste is incredible. Congratulations!!

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  • gil ortale

    that is wild!

  • M. Rugard

    There is a part of me that wants to try to recreate “Starry Night” with that…

    • stastycook

      Wow, lovely idea. Like that a lot :)

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  • Jane Grover

    Do you use fresh mozzarella that’s sold in liquid? Did the aubergine not expel a lot of liquid during baking? Can’t wait to try!

    • stastycook

      Hi Jane, I used fresh Mozzarella, and patted it dry a little. As I said, I wasn’t totally satisfied with this combination of vegetables. The aubergine was a little squishy. I think parsnips or another hard root vegetable would be a better option. Best of luck with it.

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  • cristina


    • stastycook

      Thanks :)

  • Colette

    Simply beautiful!

    • stastycook

      Thanks Colette.

  • Kristy

    I was looking for different versions of your “arty tart” after I saw yours and found this:

    They’ve used your blog post nearly word for word.

    On a lighter note, I’m so excited to make this with butternut squash, asparagus, sweet potatoes and turnips for Thanksgiving!

    • stastycook

      Hi Kristy, thanks for letting me know about that. I’ll drop them an email about it and ask for my credit. Butternut squash, asparagus, sweet potatoes and turnips sounds like an exciting and delicious combination. Happy Thanksgiving, hope you have a lovely day.

  • ashley

    Made my own version the other day.. I used parmesan instead and took out the nutmeg and add fresh herbs. I also switched up the veg.. using turnip, purple, fennel, and carrots. It was so amazing.. that’s for the inspiration..

    • stastycook

      Thanks Ashley! You version sounds delicious. I love the sound of colourful purple fennel and carrots. Thank you so much for your lovely comment.

  • Leslie C

    I. CANNOT. WAIT. To try this–and impress people with it!! WOW!! Thanks so much for sharing! I will try lots of different veggie variations, but if there’s anything that makes food more appealing–it’s the artistry in the preparation! Well done!! 😀

    • stastycook

      Thank you Leslie. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Katie

    I made this with beets, carrots, parsnips and chayote squash for some crunch. I also skipped the paprika but added lots of fresh sage and a little fresh rosemary. It was a big hit at thanksgiving dinner. So delicious! Just a word of warning if you use beets- the color will spread into the base and give an overall reddish color. It still looks beautiful, just a little less of a clean presentation than the above image. Thanks so much for the incredible recipe!

    • stastycook

      Yay! That’s great news it turned out so well. Delighted to hear that you had a nice Thanksgiving. I love your addition of sage, rosemary and chayote squash.

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