Ah, ah... Not only were my last two posts all full of whining (mostly about 2011 misfortunes), but the unluck continues until the end of the year... I'm so happy I'll be rid of it by tomorrow, and hopefully 2012 will be a little wee bit more easygoing... So, what happened now? Well, first Santa (I mistyped Satan, I'm wondering about THAT kind of Freudian slip...) brought my 35-year-old boyfriend chickenpox (YES, chickenpox of all things, for the "little" child!), which meant that all plans for New Year's Eve are cancelled, as he has to be in quarantine so he won't give it to the rest of the world. Luckily I had already had it when I was small, so I won't get it, but I'm not going to leave him in house isolation and go out to have fun on my own... A quiet night it is then. I had again many plans for this bank holiday weekend, and I had booked since months a restaurant I wanted to go to for my Birthday dinner (on Tue, which is also the first day back to work, and therefore a miserable day by definition), but all that will have to wait... I have to say I am now getting quite fed up of cancelling things, especially the ones with no refunds. But as I said, I have high hopes for 2012, and it's almost here!
To continue the misfortune story, since the little chickenpox-ridden one was looking like a sad (Dalmatian) puppy, I decided to make this tart that I had in a list of "cool new things to make during the holidays" since a while, and it was indeed really good and managed to lift both of our spirits a tiny bit. After I made it and we ate it, I went to the kitchen to put the plates in the dishwasher, and when I turned on the light it went "poof!", and the kitchen, bathroom and guestroom lights went out... Thinking it must be the fuse, I went with a flashlight (the joys of it being dark already after lunchtime...) and switched all the fuses between themselves, but no result. At the same time, the oven is also not working, but luckily the hob, the lights under the kitchen cupboards, the sockets and subsequently the fridge still have power, so at least we won't starve to death/have takeaway for New Year's Eve or lose all the nice food we have piled up in there. What a better way to start the year than peeing with a candle...
And when I thought, what more can happen, now it's almost 2012, I opened my nut drawer to get some cashew nuts and found that a mouse had taken affectionate bites off pretty much half the stuff in there, and it must have been quite stupid too, as it had taken bites of all the plastic wrappings, but not of the nuts themselves. Argggggggggh... All these nuts are now in the rubbish, fantastic. The ones that survived (the unopened ones and some that were not to its liking it seems) are now safely inside a tupperware, but I really hate the idea that there might be a mouse lurking around somewhere behind the cupboards...
Anyway, enough now, tomorrow is a new day, a new year and hopefully some new good karma! Happy New Year everyone!
Sweet potato, squash, chorizo and goats' cheese tart
Source: Adapted from delicious magazine
- 375g ready rolled puff pastry
- 400g sweet potatoes
- 350g butternut squash
- ½ tsp whole coriander
- 1 tsp whole cumin
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 eggs
- 150ml double cream
- 100g chorizo, chopped into small cubes
- 80g goats' cheese, crumbled
- A few leaves of rocket
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
Line a deep tart tin with the puff pastry, prick the base with a fork, line with scrunched up baking parchment and fill with baking beans. Chill for 15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 200°C. Dry fry the cumin and coriander in a small frying pan, until lightly browned and fragrant, then tip into a pestle and mortar and smash into powder. Peel the sweet potatoes and butternut squash and chop into small cubes. Place in a baking tray, making sure that they are all in an even layer, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the salt, pepper, coriander and cumin. Put in the bottom shelf of the oven, and at the same time put the tart tin in the top shelf of the oven and bake both for 10 minutes.
Leaving the vegetables still in the oven, take out the tart tin, remove the baking beans, and bake for another 10 minutes, until the pastry is golden and the vegetables are softened. Beat the eggs and mix with the double cream, then fold in all the vegetables, adding salt and pepper if required. Pour the mixture into the pastry case, sprinkle the chorizo and goats' cheese over it, and then bake for 20 minutes or until set and browned. Take out of the oven, leave to cool for 5 minutes and then garnish with rocket leaves.