Actually, as Donna wrote it, it’s supposed to be rosemary on the tarts, but since I am not a big fan I subbed in basil. Which was a good thing since my goat cheese is harb and garlic, specifically, basil. How can you go wrong with doubling up on a good flavor?


The pick this week is Kayte’s, who has been awol for a while and is now back and making great picks for us as usual. What do you need for this one? Puff pastry, potatoes, goat cheese (Donna called for slices but all I buy is a local soft cheese), and rosemary basil. Drizzle with a little EVOO and some cracked pepper. Delish!!


The recipe is on page 158 of Donna’s modern classics: Book 1

And don’t forget to visit with

for their tarts.

Living in Louisiana means that every year we have a Sweet Potato season. Those lovely orange orbs of sweetness can be used for just about anything – cookies, biscuits, bread, soups, stews – or just eaten with some butter and cinnamon sugar (our fave). But most of all they make great pies…or tarts.

When the November/December issue of Louisiana Cookin’ showed up there was a recipe for a Sweet Potato tart that I just could not pass up!


      Enough for two 10 inch tarts

    2 pounds sweet potatoes, cooked, peeled, and mashed (about 3 cups mashed)
    2 cups sugar
    3 large eggs, slightly beaten
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350°. On a lightly floured surface, roll out Piecrusts, and fit into 2 (lO-inch) fluted tart pans with removable bottoms. Gently press crusts into bottom and up sides of tart pans and trim. Line pans with parchment paper, and place pie weights on top.

2. Bake until crusts begin to set, about 10 minutes. Remove pie weights and parchment paper, and bake until lightly browned, about 8 to 10 minutes more. Let crusts cool on a wire rack 10 to 15 minutes.

3: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine sweet potato, sugar, eggs, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, evaporated milk, and vanilla. Mix on low speed to combine.

4. Divide filling evenly among prepared crusts. Bake 10 minutes; decrease heat to 300°, and bake until tarts have set and are dark golden brown, about 45 to 50 minutes.


The first time I baked mini tarts with this recipe. And I made a few changes. I did not include the butter (mainly because I forgot it was in the microwave), deceased the sugar by 1/2 and subbed in Truvia, increased all the spices just a smidgeon. I also used whole eggs rather than all yolks. It didn’t hurt the taste AT ALL.
You can find the original recipe on Louisiana Cookin’

And if you want lots of yummy Louisiana recipes this is THE place to find them.

Louisiana may be hot in the summer and breed mosquitoes the size of house cats, but the food is spectacular. French, Spanish, and African cuisine form the base for many of your dishes. And while not pretty, this pie is spicy and delicious. perfect for National π DAY!!

Donna uses lots of fresh ingredients in her recipes as well as lots of flavours rather than lots of salt. I have also learned it is important to have two more things in the freezer – puff pastry and filo. There are a lot of recipes in her books that use one or the other. This time, it was filo to make


    spinach and feta tart

my choice for this week’s Wednesdays with Donna Hay.

Even though I picked this I really wasn’t sure if I would like it. Feta is something I am just beginning to appreciate. I have used it before in Donna’s and other’s recipes, but it is still new in my kitchen. And I like raw spinach, but I am still NOT a fan of cooked.

The recipe calls for dill, S&P, onions, and sour cream as well as the feta and spinach. I wilted some spinach as called for but after I mixed everything up for the filling it didn’t seem to be enough so I simply snipped in some raw. I could not tell the difference at all. So next time I make this I will simply put some raw spinach into the filling and save a step.

THIS was delicious!! I made 1/2 of the tart in a 6″ dish and it was quite filling. It was my supper last nite and will be part of lunch later this week. The filo surrounded the filling with a nice light crunch much better than a pie crust.


I think you could also use the filling in those little filo cups. After all, its not about the crust, it’s all about the filling.

The recipe is on page 170 of Donna’s modern classics: Book 1

Check with

    for their pies.

And if you would like to join us on Wednesdays with Donna Hay, just leave one of us a comment. We’d love to have you in our small group.

Oops! Almost forgot…


I hope 2014 brings you blessings, joy, and happiness.

You could make a tart and the day would be happy. At least my day. There are so many ways to make a tart. Sweet. Svory. Veggie. Meat. Apple. Cheese. The possibilities are endless. And that is the problem with this week’s theme for I Heart Cooking Club. I had my heart set on Donna’s Maple Cream Tart. I had all the ingredients. Then I made B a coconut cake. And then a Bundt for National Bundt Day so I really didn’t need anything else sweet in the house. Savory it is.


    lentil and goat’s cheese tarts
    150g (5 oz) du puy orange lentils
    6 sheets filo pastryI used regular pie crust
    50g (1 1/2 oz) butter, melted
    500g (16 oz) ricotta
    4 eggs
    1 1/2 cups (12 fl oz) milk
    1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
    cracked black pepper and sea salt
    120g (4 oz) goat’s cheese, sliced

Place the lentils in a saucepan of boiling water and cook for 15 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F). Cut the cut crust into circles for 6″ tarts. Line 8 greased 1/2 cup (4 fl oz) capacity tart dishes with the pastry, folding to fit the edges in the dishes.
To make the filling, mix the ricotta, eggs and milk in a food processor until smooth. Place in a bowl and stir through the cooked lentils, parsley, pepper and salt. Pour the mixture into the pastry shells and top with the goat’s cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until the filling is set. Serve warm. Serves 4.
• You can also use blue cheese or aged cheddar.

As you can see I did make some changes to fit our tstes. The goat cheese I used was herb and garlic which really added great flavor to the tarts.

I made 4 mini tarts and one larger 1 cup capacity with cheddar cheese on top.


I liked the one with goat cheese better. Probably because it had the herb and garlic.

Donna’s original recipe is on page 76 of off the shelf

Check out what tarts the other IHCC participants made.

I like caramel. And I like easy. This tart is both. A sweet tart crust filled with a simple caramel custard. Sugar, water, cream. Milk, eggs. How can you possibly go wrong with that?


And did I mention the toasted sliced almonds?

I made the whole recipe which resulted in 5 minis and some left over custard – just for me!


If you want the recipe it is on page 457 of Dorie Greenspan’s around my French table

And check with the other Doristas and click on LYL to find out about their tarts.

It is now Saturday. Try as I might I just didn’t find the time to get this great little dessert posted before midnight. But…at least this week I found the time to actually MAKE the FFWD pick.


The galette was super simple to put together. A simple sable cookie crust that went together in no time, fresh berries, lemon curd, and whipped cream gave us an elegant dessert. Since there are only two of us at home now I only made 1/4 of the recipe. This gave me more than enough do to make a 6″ tart with some dough left over for a cookie. I topped it with lemon curd AND whipped cream, {orie suggested one or the other….}and topped that with some fresh blueberries from the garden. Some strawberries from the market and some blueberries from the pasture behind the house. Sooooo good. This is definitely a keeper. Fresh, faintly sweet, flavorful.

Visit with the other Members of FFWD and drool over their galettes. You won’t be sorry.

The recipe is on page 464 of Dorie’s around my French table

Sorry for the dark pictures. I just got a new computer and haven’t yet learned how to use the picture edit.}

This month My Kitchen My World traveled to Argentina.


And it was a delicious stay. Trying to find just the right recipe was not an easy task. There have been so many countries through history that have influenced the cuisine, like just about every other country in the world, that there was a lot to choose from But finding an historically traditional Argentine recipe (Did you know they have Gnocchi Thursdays?) was not so easy. Thankfully I had help from several sources. So….

For lunch the other day we had….


    ….Empanadas de Carne

for lunch. It seems every culture has some type of meat pie in their cuisine. The English call them Hand Pies and they were common fare for the working man. In India, Pakistan, and other countries of that area one will find Samosas. Kreatopitas in Greece, Pierogies in Poland, and Biff paj in Sweden, Chinese Pot Stickers/Dumplings (aka Gyoza in Japan). And in the South we have Meat Pies as well. The Spanish Empanada is very similar to the ones here in the deep south. That could very well be due to the Spanish influence in our early history. In Argentina there is a slight twist on the Spanish Empanada as you will see in the recipe.


    Empanada de Carne
      3 tablespoons vegetable oil
      1 large white onion (about 12 ounces),finely chopped
      1 pound ground chuck
      1 bunch scallions, white and half the green part, thinly sliced, about 3/4 cup
      1 teaspoon salt
      1/4 cup sugar
      1 teaspoon ground cumin, optional
      1 tablespoon qji molido or sweet Spanish paprika {I used Spanish smoked Paprika}
      3/4 cup pitted Spanish green olives
      5 Large eggs, hard-cooked and chopped

To prepare the filling, heat the oil over medium heat in a large saute pan and add the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is limp and translucent, about 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the ground beef with a wooden spoon and break up any lumps with the spoon. Cook the beef until it is no longer raw-looking, or until any accumulated water in the pan evaporates and the beef is sizzling, about 10 minutes. Scrape the beef mixture into a large mixing bowl and stir in the remaining ingredients, one at a time. Taste the filling for seasoning and add more salt if necessary. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the filling until you are ready to form the empanadas. The filling will keep well for up to 3 days.

To form the empanada crusts, remove the dough from the refrigerator and place it on a floured surface. Flour the dough and roll it to a 20-inch square. Use a plate or a cardboard pattern as a guide to cut the dough into 5-inch disks

To fill the empanadas, place 2 tablespoons of the filling on the lower half of 1 disk of dough. {I did not include the dough recipe. I used my go-to pie crust recipe and it was perfect.} Use a brush or fingertip to moisten the edge of the dough with the sugar syrup. Fold the dough over to cover the filling and meet the other end of the crust. Press firmly with fingertips to seal the 2 layers of dough together. Starting at one
side of the edge, make a small fold about 1/4 inch deep from the outside of the empanada toward the center, or seal by pressing hard with the tines of a fork. Continue making little folds until you reach the other end of the semicircular side of the empanada. Repeat with the remaining crusts and filling.

The Empanadas are sealed with a sugar syrup.

    3/4 cup water
    2 tablespoons sugar

To prepare the sugar syrup, bring the water and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring a couple of times to make sure the sugar has dissolved. Cool the Syrup store it in a covered jar in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.

To fry the empanadas, heat the oil in a large Dutch oven to 375 degrees. Fry 3 or 4 empanadas at a time. As they are fried, drain them on one of the prepared pans. Repeat with the remaining empanadas, making sure that the oil does not start to foam and boil over.
Drain on paper towels.

These are best devoured eaten the day they are made.

I found this recipe in Nick Malgieri’s A Baker’s Tour (page 300) They are from Ana Rambaldi and are from her native Argentina. What makes these different, says Ana – “…is flavored with an Argentine type of crushed red pepper that not hot, called aji molido, or ground pepper, you can substitute sweet Spanish paprika, but the taste will not be exactly the same. In typical South American fashion, the meat filling here is sweetened with sugar. Most Americans would probably prefer less sugar or none at all-the choice is up to you.”

What also makes them different is the inclusion of the boiled eggs and Spanish olives. Deliciously different!

After that we needed a sweet.


How about Tarta de Coco y Dulce de Leche | Coconut and Dulce de Leche Tart which I found on Katie’s Site. Katie is from Philly, living outside of Buenos Aires and learning to cook the local dishes. This one is a simple tart with a layer of Dulce de Leche covered with a tasty coconut custard. One half of the recipe yielded 3 mini tarts. Perfect.

Come by and visit with us at My Kitchen My World. Next month we are visiting…….

So, here I am. The last post for TWD, the first TWD which started in January 2008. It took me a full year to catch up and complete all the recipes I missed. 67 to be exact! And six of them in December. So here we go:

2 December 2008 Hosted by Noskos of Living the Life the bakers made:

    Linzer Sables

I had never made sables before. They are a lovely butter cookie that is filled with a jam or other treat. I used Cherry jam and instead of almonds, walnuts, or hazelnuts, I used pecans. Lots of pecans here in the south. They were perfect with a nice subtle nutty taste. And the cherry jam fit well with the pecans. You can find the recipe on her blog or on page 134 of BFMHTY.


December is a popular month for cookies. On December 16, 2008 we followed up with

    Buttery Jam Cookies

While the sables had the jam between the cookies these had the jam IN the cookie. And since I had the Cherry jam that is what I used in these tasty, biscuity cookies. There were little chunks of jam all through the cookie giving little surprises with every bite!

Thanks to Heather of Randomosity and the Girl for this sweet little treat. The recipe is on her blog. It’s also on page 80 of Dorie’s book.


December also brought two tarts into the kitchen. On 6 December 2012 we made a

Honey-Almond Fig Tart It was delicious. A sweet honey-almond custard paired with ripe juicy figs. {From my friend’s tree!} I made the full recipe of custard but only two 6″ tarts. Usually I make less custard but past experience has taught me that more IS better! The tart was hosted by my friend, Kayte of Grandma’s Kitchen Table. The recipe is on her blog, or will be because Kayte is on hiatus right now and her blog is in hibernation. You can find it on page 373 of BFMHTY.


The other tart (12 December 2011) was the…

    Puffed Double Plum Tart

And please forgive the photography. There was no way this was going to be pretty. {Or at least mine wasn’t!!} I used a regular black plum slice and prunes that had been poached in black tea with cinnamon rather than wine, orange juice, zest and anise. And while not pretty it was definitely yummy! 1/8 of a recipe gave me one small tart just for me. I knew no one else would even touch it! This was chosen by Julie of Someones in the Kitchen (or page 378 of Dorie’s book).

{Hang in there, almost done. I have to do all six today because the next available Tuesday is Christmas!}


We eat ice cream all year round. Which is a good thing because on December 13, 2011, TWD bakers pulled out their churns and made:

    Unbelievably Good Chocolate Blueberry Ice Cream

I have to admit. I was a little iffy about this one. Chocolate and BLUEBERRIES!! No way that was going to be good. I. Was. Wrong! It was delicious. I know – Trust Dorie, Trust Dorie!! Story is, she didn’t care for the combo either when she was young, but like me, she has since come to her senses!! Yay! Dorie!!

Thanks to Lauri of Slush for hosting this week’s TWD choice.>


Last (well almost) but not least –

    REAL Butterscotch Pudding

And by real I mean REAL Scotch in the pudding! Really? Yes, Really! Unfortunately, I didn’t have any scotch. Fortunately, my VGF did! A tiny bottle of Chivas Regal in her Hub’s underware drawer (Yes, Really!) which she gifted me {Prolly to her Hub’s chagrin!} and there was just enough to make 6 little pudding treats.

One word – GOOD!! Topped with a little whipped cream infused with just a tad of Scotch! BETTER!! And Donna, of Spatulas, Corkscrews and Suitcases, our host for this week, made her pudding into a PIE! What a GREAT idea! Next time!! Now that I know how easy pudding is to make from scratch. The reicpe is on Donna’s site and on page 386 of BFMHTY!

Okay. That’s it, that’s all… Okay, not quite. I still have one more cake to make. It has been the hardest to find the ingredients for. But I found what I needed and so….. but that’s another post!!

Thanks TWD for a wonderful five years of baking, learning, eating, gifting, and friend gathering. I will never forget anything!!

Back on November 8, 2008, TWD members made Rice Pudding. I was not one of them because at the time I. Could. Not. Find. Arborio rice. What! What is that? Was the response I got here in Podunk, USA. SHEESH!!! NOW it is everywhere. And I’ve used it quite a bit since I found it, but never did get around to making the Rice Pudding. Have now!!!

And it came out perfectly (I had tried it before and it was a miserable failure.) I made 1/2 of the recipe which gave me two nice helpings. One vanilla and one chocolate. B liked the chocolate and I prefered the vanilla so we were both happy. It is not the most photogenic dessert, at least not the chocolate….

Isabelle chose the recipe that week and you can find the recipe on her blog. It is also on page 412 of BFMHTY.


November 29, 2011 Normandy Tarts appeared in TWD kitchens.

I made about 1/3 of the filling recipe, used pears instead of apples and ended up with a 4″ mini tart. The pears were at B’s request. Good little tart chosen by my friend Tracey of Tracey’s Culinary Adventures. It was her second time to host and her Tart is Gorgeous!! You can also find the recipe in BFMHTY on page 304.


I did skip one recipe for March back when – Chocolate Pots de Creme. {March 1, 2011}

We had made the Caramel Pots de Creme in May of 2011 and they worked out well so I wasn’t worried about the chocolate. 1/2 of recipe resulted in 4 4″ ramekins of chocolate delight. Thank you Christine of Cats in the Kitchen. LOVED these. Recipe is on her blog and on page 390 of Dorie’s book.

That’s all. I posted the Far Breton {1 November 2011} in September. I still have’t made the Chestnut Cake. Still no chestnuts to be found except in large portions and I am only making mini cakes these days since it is just the two of us. MAYBE by the end of the year I will get it made.

I missed a lot of December picks – six to be exact. I will be busy!!

The thing about apple tarts is that they usually aren’t as sweet as some desserts. And that’s a good thing. I love apple desserts. And if they include custard and filo dough, well… ’nuff said.

This was basically a simple dessert. Layers of buttered filo dough topped with a thick (very thick) almond cream and covered in sliced Gala apples. Now top that with some almond flavored whipped cream…

    ….and you have a finger lickin’ tasty treat.

And I do mean finger-lickin’ because you can pick this up and ‘eat it out of hand’ as Dorie says.

This was supposed to be made with almond flour but I didn’t have any. I used regular four and a good deal of almond extract. This gave me an admirable almond cream. But it was very thick and difficult to spread on the fragile filo dough. Not to worry, careful and slow did the job. Dorie glazed her tart with a jelly glaze but I sprinkled mine with a cinnamon sugar instead. It was good.

I am sure there were others out there who made a few changes in Dorie’s apple tart. Go on over to and check out the apple tarts. You can find the recipe on page 458 in Dorie’s around my french table.

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