Taking just a few ingredients and turning them into something spectacular is so satisfying. I love that these pumpkin tartlettes are simple enough for a weeknight meal and elegant enough for a holiday dinner that's sure to impress your guests – vegan or not.
- 2 cups cooked farro
- ¾ cup fresh bread crumbs
- 4 dates, pitted
- ½ cup shelled walnut pieces
- 2 tbsp flax meal
- olive oil
- 2 medium-large sweet dumpling squash (pumpkin), halved and seeded (see Note)
- 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups roasted beetroot
- 1 tbsp chopped walnuts
- rosemary sprigs, to garnish
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC.
Line a rimmed baking tray with baking paper and roast the pumpkin cut-side down for 20-25 minutes or until a knife is easily inserted into the top of each piece. Remove from oven and set aside.
While the pumpkin is roasting, place farro and bread crumbs in a medium mixing bowl, set aside.
In a food processor, blend dates with 9 tablespoons of warm water until well blended. Add the wet mixture to the farro and bread crumbs and mix well.
Spray 6 mini tart pans or 1 large pie plate or tart pan with olive oil or another vegan cooking spray. Press the farro mixture into the bottom of the pan working your way up the sides of each tart pan. Place the tarts in the oven during the last 10 minutes of the pumpkin roasting – the edges of the tarts will begin to turn golden brown
Once the pumpkin is cool enough to handle (or if you are impatient use a clean dish towel to handle it) scoop out the flesh of each half (the skin is edible so I like to add some into the mix too) and place in the food processor with the maple syrup and process until smooth.
Divide the pumpkin mixture between the 6 tart pans. Top with 3 slices of roasted beetroots, sprinkle with walnuts and garnish with rosemary. Enjoy!
• Sweet dumpling squash are small, striped pumpkins with tender orange flesh. Substitute butternut or acorn pumpkin if unavailable.
Recipe from Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes by Heather Poire, with photographs by Heather Poire.