Winding Down

By Angela Denstad Stigeler

Sweet as it is, summer can’t last forever. But even as those warm, carefree days are coming to a close, the garden yields up a last hurrah, heading into high gear before its eventual downward spiral. So take full advantage of the turning of the seasons with this summer spiral tart. Layers of your favorite vegetables can stand in for any of those listed, creating colorful twirling flavors in a savory pastry crust. So as your summer is winding down, take a turn wrapping up the end-of-summer flavors into this festive tribute to the season. So delicious and elegant, it might make your head spin!


Summer Spiral Tart


1 pie crust

1 large eggplant (or 2 small)

1 large zucchini (or 2 small)

1 red pepper

Two carrots

3 tablespoons mustard

1 egg

1/2 cup cream

goat cheese (optional)

Salt and Pepper


Preheat oven to 350°F. Wash the vegetables, trim the ends, peel the carrots and remove the seeds from the pepper. Cut the peppers into strips and slice all the other vegetables lengthwise on a mandolin, or as thinly as possible with a knife, being sure to trim one side first to create a stable cutting surface.

Blanch the carrots for 4 to 5 minutes in plenty of boiling water until tender.

Fit the pastry into a 10-inch pie plate, crimp he edges and then brush it with 2 tablespoons of mustard. Arrange the vegetables strips in a spiral, skin side of zucchini and eggplant up. Cut strips of zucchini and eggplant in half lengthwise, if necessary. Place pepper strips between two “layers”. Lightly salt the vegetables.

In a bowl, whisk the egg, cream, 1 tablespoon mustard, salt and pepper to taste. Pour the custard carefully over the vegetables. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Garnish with small cubes of goat cheese if desired.