These are very simple tarts, with just a few well-met flavours layered together, and no eggs or custard in sight. They make a classy, elegant starter and are very easy to put together. I would never make such a tiny amount of either the pastry or the pepper puree. If you at least double both, you could be turning these out for days, or for many more people, and you will find many other uses for them too. The sauce, or vinaigrette as it likes to be called, makes enough for more than ten, but it would be hard to get a smaller volume to come together and it keeps well.
ROLL THE PASTRY to fit four shallow tartlet cases, and blind bake them as described.
Chop the peeled red pepper and put it in a small pan with the garlic, olive oil and enough water to cover. Bring this to the boil and cook at a lively simmer until the water has almost evaporated, then puree what’s left and leave it to cool. You should now have a thick, intensely flavoured spread.
Chop the yellow pepper into dice of about 1cm and mix them with the chopped olives.
To put the tarts together, put some pepper puree in each, maybe two teaspoons or so, then a generous tablespoon of the yellow pepper and olives on top of that, and finally some thinly sliced brie.
Serve one tartlet per person with a thin drizzle of the balsamic vinaigrette poured around it.
FOR THE BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE, put all of the ingredients in a jug and use a hand liquidiser to blend the sauce to an emulsified, thickened consistency. Check the flavour - you may need to adjust one or all of the components. If the sauce subsequently separates, just blend it back together again before serving. There is enough here for at least ten portions and it will keep for a week or so in the fridge.
© 1999 All rights reserved. Published by Cork University Press.