November is a funny time for food. On one hand you have an internet flooded with fabulous fall-themed family-style recipes and lots of Thanksgiving showstoppers* that can inspire even the biggest kitchen-phobes to dust off their pots and pans and on the other hand you have a whole month of dinners and lunches to prepare with your autumn vegetables that need to be easy so you don’t trash your kitchen or burn out before the big day. I’ve met a lot of people who tell me that they eat cereal for dinner the days leading up and following their big family get together.
We think you gotta look at November as a marathon and you don’t want to peak on pumpkin pies and roasted squash before you make it to the finish line but you also don’t want to miss out on all the good stuff to be had along the way with dinners of granola and grapes**. It’d be hard to find a proper fall recipe easier than this. It’s also easy on the eyes – with the bright orange potatoes and wine colored onions on a flakey crust creating a meal that looks way more complicated and fancy than it was to make. It’s also something you can make for your omnivore family and friends to help distract them from trying to sneak animals into other meals before and after your turkey-friendly Thanksgiving.
This charming recipe makes 8 good sized tarts that will be a wonderful post or pre-Thanksgiving meal. So let’s nom.
Simple Sweet Potato & Sage Tarts
2 medium-sized sweet potatoes, sliced thin – we recommend using a mandoline so they are a uniform thickness
1 small red onion, chopped large
1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 sheets prepared vegan puff pastry sheets, defrosted
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Bragg’s Liquid Amino Acids
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon rosemary
11/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon crushed whole mustard seeds
Pinch of celery seed
1-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
8 whole fresh sage leaves
2 pinches of crushed black peppercorns
Heat oven to 400 or temperature on package of puff pastry package.
In a large bowl, whisk together your oil, Bragg’s, thyme, rosemary, rubbed sage, crushed mustard seeds and celery seeds. Then toss your sweet potato slices, onion and beans in the oil until everything is lightly coated. Pour your vegetables, beans and oil into a baking dish and spread it out to make an even layer. Put your dish in the oven to bake for 15-20 minutes. How long you bake them will depend on how thick your potatoes are sliced. Thicker slices need longer to bake. Once your potatoes are tender enough to pierce all the way through with a fork with little effort but not so soft they melt or break apart when you pierce them with a fork – pull them out of the oven. Use a spoon to portion your potatoes, onions and beans into 8 equal portions.
While your potatoes are baking, unfold your puff pastry sheets. Using a wheel pizza cutter, cut each sheet into 4 equal square portions. Place them on 2 baking sheet lined with a piece of baking parchment paper. Your puff pastry should have one side that has more flour on it than the other. Put your puff pastry the floured side down.
Brush your hot herbed oil over your puff pastry squares leaving about a centimeter clear along the edge to create a crust. Sprinkle nutritional yeast over the oiled part of your puff pastry. Go ahead and be heavy handed with the nutritional yeast. Then using a spoon, put one of the portions of vegetables and beans on top of the nutritional yeast. I used a fork to spread and fan the potatoes out in a pretty way and distribute the onions and beans evenly because… pretty. Put one fresh sage leaf on top of each tart and drizzle the remaining herbed oil over the top of each tart.
Put your tarts in the oven to bake for 20 minutes or following the instruction your puff pastry package. Bake until your puff pastry fluffs up and is a soft golden brown.
Serve warm and with a fork because these tarts are serious business and you don’t want to loose any of these roll-y beans to a big bite.
* Yes – That is a photo of a woman kayaking in a pumpkin.
** True story for another time.