Last weekend I had the wonderful opportunity to visit my family in Seattle and meet my little grand niece just 5 weeks old. Of course my gift to her was a colorful set of pots and pans. Afterall, her parents and grandparents are all foodies and her great aunt is The Queen of Tarts. Got to get her going asap!
My Seattle relatives have lovely lush gardens due to all the rain. My nephew has a beautiful urban oasis with a very productive garden in a small space. We ate the best green beans fresh from the garden for dinner. My brother was hard at work constructing a greenhouse so he can recreate his California tomatoes in his forest environment.
After visiting with the new baby and family I went out to my cousin’s house for the rest of the weekend. They also live in a beautiful spot-their house is surrounded by beautiful gardens and deep forest. I sat on that porch overlooking the garden for several hours reading a book and it was just delightful. My cousins Lee and Fritz are amazing in the kitchen. I always feel like I spent the weekend at a fabulous b&b-pampered, relaxed and well fed.
Lee and I spent hours pouring over cookbooks and talking about cooking, cooking classes, ingredients and tools. Lee has celiac disease and had to totally change the way she cooked a few years ago. She asked me to try making more gluten free recipes on the blog and even to make the same recipe with and without gluten from time to time to accommodate the folks struggling with this new reality.
So today I made something Greek adapted from her cookbook, Foods of the Greek Islands by Aglaia Kremezi. I decided to make the cheese tart with ricotta cheese and thyme honey and top it with spoon sweet cherries. It wasn’t entirely traditional to put those two together but it sounded good to me. The subtle sweetness of the tart, with the warmth of the cinnamon and honey topped with the sweet, tart cherries was a great combination. I made two versions of the pastry-one regular and one gluten free. I decided to make mini tarts with the gluten free pastry and a big tart with the other so I could make sure to keep them absolutely separate. The secret ingredient in the pastry is beer! I used a gluten free raspberry beer because I am pretty sure they buy the raspberry puree from Oregon Fruit.Tags: cheese tarts, mini tarts, royal anne cherries, tarts