Inspired, but tired.

So when I work hard, I cook hard. Seems the more pressure on me in my work life, the more I need to just come home and immerse myself in cooking to rebalance. So after a very full day just short of a double shift, I decided I had to make a tart, much to my lovely boy's wish of running to the grocery store at 9pm or thereabout to get the necessary ingredients. This one is adapted from Epicurious, spinned lollya-style and is delicious.

Camembert & Caramelized Leek Tart


1 17.3-ounce package frozen puff pastry (2 sheets), thawed

3 tablespoons butter
1 large red onion - chopped
4 leeks, trimmed - sliced ¼ inch thick
1/4 cup water

2/3 cup whipping cream
4 ounces Camembert cheese – slice off rind and cube for easy melting
(take note that it is FAR superior with a fresh cheese shop cheese)
1 large egg
Pinch of cayenne
Grating of fresh nutmeg pod

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 Tbsp chopped thyme

mesclun or other leafy green mix
olive oil
grey poupon


Preheat oven to 400°F.
Flour your surface and stack pastry sheets on top of eachother
Roll out to size (14” round for pizza stone/ 14” x 17” rectangular to fit baking sheet)
Crimp edge of dough to all around to form at least 1/4-inch rim. Transfer to pizza stone or baking sheet. Freeze 10 minutes.

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add red onions & leeks and 1/3 cup water; cook until leeks are tender, about 15 minutes.

Season onion mixture with salt; set aside to cool.

Bring cream to simmer in medium saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; add Camembert and stir until melted. Remove from heat and cool 5 minutes. Whisk in egg, cayenne, and fresh nutmeg.

Take out the frozen pastry and sprinkle Parmesan all over it. Spread onion mixture over the entire crust evenly.

Drizzle custard over.

Bake until bottom is golden, about 20 minutes.
Transfer to rack; cool 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serve on a bed of oil & vinegar dressed mesclun greens.
This tart was adapted from Epicurious. Man I love those guys.


Ready. Set. Grow.

I'm hopping on the culinary wagon. I've been cooking my entire life, but never has it been more definitive of who I am than now. The busier I get, the more I want to just hole up in my tiny kitchen and have a go at my fresh veggies. Rinse and chop and marry them into a mouth explosion deserving of a Roman god.

I find cooking such a calming experience, that I often find myself daydreaming of the next tastebud-slapping match that I will compete in.

It's officially summer now, so I can only think of one recipe to start this journey out with. So, here goes...

Kick Ass Mexican Black Bean Burger
This veggie option burger has a wonderful contrast with a crunchy crust and a smooth soft interior. It's spicy and delicious. It's kicks frozen veggie burger ass.
  • 15 ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 a red bell pepper, diced fine
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced fine
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp. chipotle powder
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs (can use regular)
  • Serve on a toasted onion bun (we were out of them for the pic above) spread with yellow mustard. Top with sharp cheddar, sliced red onion, sliced tomato, few leaves of cilantro and drizzle with bbq sauce.

    1. Preheat your grill
    2. In a medium bowl, mash black beans with a fork until it's paste-like
    3. Add chopped vegetables
    4. Crack an egg over everything
    5. Toss in your spices
    6. Mix slowly and incorporate panko until it takes form
    7. Divide into 5 equal portions and form patties
    8. Wrap in tinfoil
    9. Grill for 10 - 15 mins until good crust forms on the outside
    10. Serve on bun with the fixings mentioned above


© 2007 All writing and photography is owned by Lollya.