Oh my gosh this time of year is a race! I think siting down to write this is the first time I have sat down all day. I find myself running almost everywhere I go. Today, Penelope visited a few more classrooms at school. She is a huge hit! I try to expose the children to as much agriculture as I can. I am working with the science teacher growing a vegetable garden for the children to help out in. I am bound and determined to get the kids to realize that food does not start at the supermarket it ends up there.
So with that in mind I have brought some of our animals to school to share with the children. I hope to get them excited about agriculture even on a small-scale. I have brought chicks as well as full-grown laying hens to meet the children. I brought Daisy the goat to meet the children as well. You have not lived until you have wrestled a goat into your mini van for a field trip! It all was going pretty well until that last moment when she pooped all over the driver’s seat of my van. Poop pellets shot right out of her and bounced all over the place. My friend Alyssa and her Mom were there and laughed so hard I though they might pull a muscle.
Even with the extreme vacuuming of my van for days in a row I was still finding hidden poop pellets in nooks and crannies for weeks! That was the last field trip Daisy the goat went on. Sigh. I don’t even want to tell you the choice words Hubby had for the poop-a-palooza he found in my van that day.
I’m telling you December is my favorite month of the year but when it’s over and I can sit and read all my favorite blogs I am so thankful. I miss having the chance to sit and read what you are all doing. I find myself jumping to my favorite blogs and bookmarking so many great stories and articles I just don’t want to miss. Please know I have not forgotten your wonderful blogs I miss them terribly. I am just not able to get my “me” time right this moment. Oh, how I miss my “me”time. I even tried to stay up really late just so I could have a little uninterrupted reading time….I fell asleep and ended up with an iPad shaped line on my face….there was drool. It was not good. I’m just glad I didn’t drop it. The iPad not the drool.
Well, while waiting for the decorations to be completed shall we bake a scrumptious savory tart?
Leek, Bacon and Apple Tart with Gruyère Cheese ~ Adapted from Canadian Living Magazine with changes by Me.
8 slices of bacon (I use thick cut)
2 leeks cut in half lengthwise and sliced (be sure to clean your leeks very well. They can hold a lot of grit)
2 cloves of garlic (I used 4 because they were on the small side)
1/4 dry white wine
3 sweet-tart apples (I used honey crisp and granny smiths…I had them on hand) cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 sheet of puff pastry (defrosted)
Salt and pepper
a pinch of dry thyme or a sprig or two of fresh
pinch of crushed red pepper
1/4 cup of heavy cream
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 ounces shredded Gruyère cheese
Please note that this tart was made free form in the magazine but I made it in a fluted tart pan. In the magazine they made 2 free from tarts but this one is a little deeper as a single formed tart.
Here we go….
Cut the bacon into lardon size pieces (1/2 inch wide). Fry the bacon in a sauté pan until just about crisp but not quite. When the bacon is cooked keep about a tablespoon and a half of the fat in the pan. Drain the bacon on paper towels.
Sauté the garlic and the leeks until softened (about 3 minutes). Add the wine and allow it to cook until the is just about no more liquid in the pan. Add the apples. Cook the apple/leek mixture until the apples begin to soften (about 3 minutes). Season with salt and pepper, thyme and a pinch of crushed red pepper. Stir in the cream. Set the filling aside.
Roll out the puff pastry and line the tart pan with it. With a pastry brush evenly brush the mustard onto the bottom of the dough. Heat the oven to 400 degrees.
Set the tart pan on a baking sheet (to catch any drips and make it easier to handle).
Evenly spread the leek/apple mixture into the tart pan. Be sure to remove any thyme stems. Next add most of the bacon and a bit of the cheese. Then a bit more bacon and the rest of the cheese.
Bake the tart at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes. It should be crisp and nicely browned. Allow to cool for a few minutes them remove the tart from the pan onto a serving plate.
Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
You can also make this tart into mini tartlets by preparing them in mini muffin tins. (They make great hors d’ oeuvres).
Penelope loves to sit in the dustpan….she is so cute!!!!