Archive for Seasonal

Rhubarb Tart {Vegan}

Well, it’s spring. I mean, officially, though it sure doesn’t feel much like spring these days in Vancouver. 

This is the time of the year when I eagerly start to look for the first signs of spring produce, and that usually means two things: rhubarb and asparagus. 

Vegan Rhubarb Tart

When I was a kid growing up on the east coast, it would have been fiddleheads, but they aren’t as popular here. 

We always grew rhubarb in our garden, so there’s something so nostalgic about it for me. My mom used to give me a stalk of it, and bowl of sugar, and let me go to town. She’d also make pie. 

I don’t grow my own, so I spent the past two weeks looking for it everywhere. Finally, on a tip from a FB friend, I tracked it down at Donald’s Market, but if you get to the farmer’s market this weekend, you’ll likely find it there. 

rhubarb

I was inspired this year to do something a little different. The idea of this dessert is that it’s more like a lemon meringue pie, but instead of the tartness of the lemon, you have the tartness of the rhubarb. 

Plus, you cannot go wrong with that beautiful pale pink colour that’s reminiscent of all of spring’s prettiest blossoms. 

This would be a great option to serve at your Easter brunch or dinner this weekend, or for Mother’s Day. 

Rhubarb Tart Vegan

Rhubarb Tart {Vegan}

Ingredients: 

  • 1 store-bought vegan pie crust or home-made
  • 2 cups rhubarb, washed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup non dairy milk (something neutral, like soy)
  • 1/4 vegan butter
  • 1/4 cup aquafaba
  • pinch of cream of tartar
  • 2 tbsp sugar

Method: 

  1. Blind-bake the pie crust for about 10-15 minutes, until it is golden. Set aside to cool. 
  2. In a heavy-bottomed, medium saucepan, place the rhubarb, sugar, water and lemon juice. Place over medium heat, and allow to come to a boil. Turn down the heat, and simmer for about 10-15 minutes, until the rhubarb is soft, thickened, and jammy. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes. 
  3. In your blender, place the cooked rhubarb mixture, the dairy-free milk, and the cornstarch. Blend well until everything is smooth, then return to the pot. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, allowing the curd to thicken. Remove from the stove and allow to cool completely. 
  4. While the curd is cooling, place the aquafaba, 2 tbsp of sugar and a pinch of cream of tartar in the bowl of your mixer. Mix on low for about 2 minutes, then turn the speed up to high and whip until you get fairly stiff peaks. This may take up to 10 minutes, depending on your aquafaba, but you can’t overmix it, so keep going until it’s really light and fluffy. 
  5. Reserve a little of the aquafaba in a piping bag for garnish (about 1/2 cup)
  6. Carefully fold the rhubarb curd into the aquafaba, until it is all incorporated. Pour the finished curd/mousse mixture into the cooled pie or tart shell, and place in the fridge to set for at least a few hours, or overnight. 
  7. Decorate the tart with leftover aquafaba, and serve. 

Salted Dark Chocolate Shortbread

A few years back, when I first started my business, I’d bake mountains of Christmas cookies to distribute to my clients this time of the year. 

Well, times have changed. My teaching career took off, I entered the lucrative world of food blogging (LOL) and I slowly let my clients go. I mostly work with one major client these days. 

But I still really like baking cookies at this time of the year. Heck, at any time of the year, if we’re being honest. I’m kind of a snob about making sure Michael has homemade cookies in his lunch. And I don’t like visiting friends this time of the year empty-handed. And I do have cookie exchange this weekend… Salted Dark Chocolate Shortbread

So this year, I’m making three types of cookies. These ginger cookies are one of my faves this time of the year. I kick them up with a grating of fresh ginger and some chopped candied ginger. I’m also going to be making my vegan snickerdoodles (recipe is in my cookbook) for the vegans in the crowd, and then I made these. 

Now, to be fair, these were a very spur-of-the-moment decision. They were a bit of a risk. 

A couple weeks back, my friend Rob came into town to go to the Christmas Market with Michael and I. The next morning, after Michael had gone to school, Rob and I walked over to the downtown Lindt store before he caught the ferry back to the Sunshine Coast. I got Michael an advent calendar, and I stocked up on my favourite chocolate bar, which is the Lindt Dark Fleur de Sel. I am basically never without one of these in my house. I don’t eat a lot of them, maybe one square or two per night, but I like to have it on hand at all times. 

As we were leaving, I grabbed a Lindt-produced magazine to have a look at, as it had recipes, and I noticed this one for a chocolate shortbread. I figured I’d give it a go. 

I made the cookies and they were good. So good, in fact, that all the taste-testers concerned agreed they were blog-worthy. And I think these will now make it into my regular rotation. 

They’re super easy to make because you just make up the dough, then roll it into a log and then allow it to set up in the fridge. When you’re ready to bake them, just slice off rounds. It also freezes well, or you could gift people with logs of uncooked dough which they could bake themselves. 

By the way, this post is, in no way, shape or form sponsored by Lindt. But Lindt, if you’re reading… 😉 

Dark Chocolate Shortbread

Salted Dark Chocolate Shortbread

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups butter, softened to room temp
  • 1 ½ icing sugar
  • 3 cups flour
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 bar Sea Salt Dark Chocolate (or dark chocolate plus a little extra sea salt)

Method

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy. 
  2. Add the salt and then the flour slowly (so as not to create an poof of flour), until it is incorporated. 
  3. Chop the chocolate bar into small pieces, and fold the chocolate into the dough. 
  4. Divide the dough into three even lumps, and then roll the lumps out into logs about 2″ in diameter. Wrap the logs snugly in wax paper or saran wrap, then place in the fridge to set. 
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  6. Slice the logs into 1/4″ to 1/2″ slices, and place on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle with a little extra grated chocolate and sea salt if desired. 
  7. Bake for around 9 minutes, until the edges are just beginning to be golden. 
  8. Remove and allow to cool on a wire rack. 
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