Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Milano Rice Tart

So the CFO of the company that I work for walks into our shared executive kitchen and says "You should totally go into the baking business! I would pay money to bring someone a recipe that I think would be good and have them bake it for me and then when I'm throwing a dinner party I can say that its homemade and everyone at the party would just assume that it was made by me!" So we got to chatting and I asked her which recipe was she thinking about and below is the results of our conversation exchange!

Now the funny part of the story is that I went home after work, had all the ingredients except for the rhubarb and starting making the recipe. I started in on the instructions (placed the rhubarb in a baking dish and placed it in the oven.) and after 20 minutes brought the dish out of the oven and opened up the aluminmum foil only to discover MUSH!! Complete rhubarb mush! 20 minutes as 10 minutes way tooo long! So I get back in the car (thank goodness my Safeway is open 24hrs!!!) and bought another 1 1/4lb of rhubarb (and thank goodness they were on sale this week!!) and the ironic thing is that I got in the same cashier lane and she remembered me from 30 minutes BEFORE!! Hilarious! Anyways, hope its good Jill cuz it sure looks yummy!!!

Adapted from Flo Braker, Special to The Chronicle
Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Serves 6-8

The roasted fresh rhubarb:
1 1/4 lbs fresh rhubarb, trimmed and sliced into 3/4-inch pieces
1/2 cup sugar

The pastry:
11/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 tsp kosher salt
4 oz (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract

The filling:
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
3 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/3 cup uncooked long grain rice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the rhubarb: Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325°F. Arrange rhubarb slices in a single layer in a shallow glass or ceramic baking pan. Sprinkle with sugar, and cover the pan with aluminum foil. Bake just until tender, about 15-25 minutes. Don't overcook the rhubarb or it will fall apart. Cool in the pan, cover and refrigerate until ready to arrange on top of the tart.

For the pastry: Have on hand a 9 1/2-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt, and pulse 3 or 4 times to blend. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture and pulse until the mixture is the consistency of cornmeal. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and vanilla. With the motor running, pour the egg mixture down the feed tube and process just until the ingredients form a ball.
Remove the dough to a work surface, and with the heel of your hand press the dough together until it is smooth and cohesive. Shape the dough into a 5-inch disk and if not using right away, wrap the dough and refrigerate it for an hour or up to 2 days. (If dough is cold and firm, remove it from refrigerator and set aside at room temperature until it is malleable yet still cool before using.
Roll the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap until you have a 13-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Remove the top portion of plastic wrap from pastry, lift plastic wrap with rolled out pastry on it, and center it, pastry side down on tart pan. Gently peel away second sheet of plastic wrap. With fingertips, fit pastry into pan (fitting carefully into corners). If pastry splits a bit, it patches easily. Fit the dough into the pan by pushing some of the overhang down the sides. Then, run the rolling pin over the rim of tart pan to cut off excess dough. Refrigerate pastry-lined pan to chill dough, about 30 minutes or up to one day.
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until dough's surface is dull (no longer shiny) on top, and firm to the touch in the center. Check after initial 5-7 minutes of baking for signs of blistering. If necessary, prick dough in four to five places to release steam so that the dough will fit snugly in the pan again. Remove from oven, and to a wire rack while preparing the filling. Maintain the same oven temperature.
For the filling: Whisk the whole egg, egg yolk, and sugar in a small bowl briefly to combine. Set aside.
Combine the milk, cream and salt in a 1 1/2-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil, add the rice and stir to blend. When the mixture returns to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer, uncovered. Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for 18-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender. (The mixture reduces during this time, and though it is thicker, it still appears liquid.)
Pour about 1/2 cup of the hot rice mixture into the egg mixture, stirring to combine. Then return egg-rice mixture to remaining hot rice, and stir until blended. Stir in the vanilla.
Spoon the rice filling into the partially baked pastry shell, spreading it evenly with a rubber spatula. Return to the 350° oven for 12-15 minutes longer, or until the filling is set and the pastry is light golden near the rim of the pan. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool on a rack.
To finish the tart: Gently lift the rhubarb pieces from the pan, one at a time, and place them in a circular pattern on top of the tart.

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