How to make Roasted Vegetable Tart: Review of Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

Guess what I have a copy of in my hot little hands? Yotam Ottolenghi’s new book called Plenty. The books official publication date is 6 May 2010 copies have been on sale in the Ottolenghi stores for the last week or so. The book is solely a vegetarian cookbook and is almost guaranteed to dismiss any notions you may have of vegetarian food being dull and grim. Rather than being based on the food served in the Ottolenghi cafe, Plenty contains the recipes featured in Yotam Ottolenghi’s column in The Guardian, The New Vegetarian. This means that if you have carefully clipped out the recipes over the years you may be able to get away without buying the book.

Roasted vegetable tart from Plenty
The book is divided into sections based on ingredients. Different vegetables have their own chapter such as mushrooms, green beans and aubergines which is very handy for people who grow their own or get vegie boxes. There is also sections on pulses, cereals and pasta. The dessert chapter is entitled “Fruit with cheese” and is a bit meagre, only containing seven recipes which is a shame when you think of all the brilliant cakes and pastries on display in Ottolenghi’s window displays.
The book
The book is beautiful to look at and each recipe is spread over a page with a full colour photograph on the opposite page. Like Yotam Ottolenghi’s first book, Ottolenghi: The Cookbook, the recipes are well written and although often complicated seem almost fool proof (well Gourmet Chick proof). I tried out the roasted vegetable tart which is called a “Very Full Tart”, slow roasting all the vegetables takes a bit of time but makes the flavours bold and strong.
Lots of beautiful photos
So should you buy the book? If you are vegetarian I think this book is almost compulsory because there are so many great ideas for creative and mouthwatering vegetarian dishes. For the rest of us, I prefer Ottolenghi: The Cookbook because it includes meat and seafood recipes as well, desserts and puddings are covered in length and all the best dishes from the Ottolenghi cafes are also included. If you are an Ottolenghi fan though I am guessing you will just have to have both books anyway.
Cooking the onions and bay leaves
Roasted Vegetable Tart
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
100ml olive oil
1 aubergine diced into 4 cm pieces
1 sweet potato peeled and died into 4cm pieces
1 courgette diced into 4cm pieces
2 medium onions thinly sliced
2 bay leaves
300g shortcrust pastry
8 thyme sprigs picked
120g ricotta
120g fetta
7 cherry tomatoes, halved
2 eggs
200ml double cream
Salt and pepper to season
The vegetables once roasted
1. Preheat oven to 230C. Remove the pepper stalks and seeds, place the peppers in an oven tray, drizzle with oil and roast.
2. Mix the aubergine with four tablespoons of oil and season. Tip into an oven tray and roast.
3. After 12 minutes add the sweet potato, stir and roast for 12 minutes more.
4. Add the courgette, stir and roast for another 12 minutes.
5. Once the peppers are brown and the vegetables cooked remove them all from the oven and tun the heat down to 160C.
6. Cover the peppers with foil and leave to cool, once cool peel off the skin and tear the peppers into strips.
7. Meanwhile heat two tablespoons of oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Cook the onions with the bay leaves and some salt for 25 minutes stirring occasionally until brown, soft and sweet. Discard the bay leaves and set aside.
8. Grease a 22cm tart tin. Roll the pastry to a 3mm thick circle large enough to line the in with some overhang. Press it into the edges and line with baking paper and fill with baking weights or rice. Bake blind for 20 minutes, lift out the weights or rice and bake the tart case for a further 10 to 15 mintues or until golden brown.
9. Remove the tart case from the oven and spread the onions over the bottom, then top with the roasted vegetables. Scatter over half the thyme, dot with chunks of both cheeses and then the tomato.
10. Whisk the eggs and cream with some salt and pepper and pour into the tart, the tomatoes and cheese should remain exposed. Scatter the remaining thyme on top.
11. Bake for 35 – 40 minutes, until the filling sets and turns golden.
12. Rest for 10 minutes then trim off the excess pastry and serve.
Serves four to six. Adapted from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi.
If you liked reading this you might be interested in my review of Ottolenghi: The Cookbook or of the cooking course I did with Sami Tamimi, Yotam’s partner in Ottolenghi.
Thanks to Ebury for a review copy of Plenty.


  1. Gourmet Chick! Thank you so much for posting this: I will make it on Friday evening: it looks like it will be perfect for the crowd of people I am feeding. Thanks again!

  2. Nice. I have a bevvie of veggie friends so this would be good to have on hand. Love the colours of that tart – definitely a crowd pleaser!

  3. Oh my how delicious does this look. A fabulous recipe to have for all the veggie friends…and the carnivores too. Thanx so much

  4. Fab post: definitely a great dish for crowds. I made the caponata that appeared in last Sat’s Guardian New Vegetarian column, and found it disappointing. But I’ll persevere with another ‘Plenty’ dish now I’ve read your post!

  5. Nice post. I really want to get my hands on this book now. I’ve already made the lentil and yoghurt salad from the little taster leaflet in the Guardian a couple of weeks ago and I love the original Ottolenghi Cookbook.

  6. I couldn’t agree more. You are the only one aside from me who seems to like the old one better. The new book is lovely, I did buy it, but I was so disappointed that there were no bread or sweets recipes (my two favorite food groups). Nevertheless, your tart looks amazing.
    *kisses* HH

  7. I am not totally veggie…but try very hard not to have meat in the house during the week (the gourge at the weekend! ha!) this is now at the top of my birthday list…i love ottolenghi and i know that this will just be perfect for me! the tart….looks…..amazing!! 🙂

  8. that looks like a cool book, but i have a feeling i would have a hard time finding it in the states

  9. I should post this link to my vegetarian friends and they should love this and would try the recipes. And the fun thing of all, I get to have a taste. 🙂

  10. Lovely review. This book sounds great, I can’t wait for my copy to arrive.

  11. Miss A- good luck with the recipe I think it is a good one for a crowd

    Graphic Foodie – the colours are really beautiful aren’t they

    Browniegirl – yes great for vegies

    Laura Nickoll – Shame that the caponata didn’t work out I haven’t tried that one yet, but maybe best to avoid

    Natasha – I got that leaflet as well – it was a great ad for the book

    Heavenly Housewife – I hope there are more sweets in the next book – but we might have to wait a while for it

    Victoria – thats a good policy I am aiming for one day a week at the moment meat free which is not quite as impressive but is a start

    Justin – I met Sami Tamimi (Yotam Ottolenghi’s business partner) a few weeks ago and tried to convince him that the books would be really popular in the US and Aus. He said they were told they wouldn’t succeed in the US as there is no TV show to go with them!

    Sophea – I like your plan

    George – Enjoy

  12. I ordered Plenty this week, can’t wait to get it delivered. I like the soft cover and the book layout although like you, i still prefer their first book. I was a vegetarian for a couple of years, love my greens, but can’t seem to get all that excited about a meal consisting of vegetables only.

  13. Luiz – I agree the cover is nice – quite different. Wow didn’t know you were vego once – I would like to try to eat more meat free meals but I am often tempted just to add a little bacon or something!

  14. I reckon a lot of people will be put off by the lack of desserts/cakes in this book, having said that, I have made about 10 things but am yet to bake any of the sweet stuff in the first book other than the macarons. So maybe I wouldn’t miss the sweet stuff, it’s not like I’ve not got any other baking books after all so when I eventually get around to getting this I should enjoy it for what it is.

  15. I made this, using your recipe, and it is gorgeous. It took a little longer to roast the sweet potato and courgette—I had to remove the aubergine because it was done way before the courgette was added—and it took about an hour for the whole tart to cook. But it was really tasty, and even better after cooling for a few hours and served at room temperature.

    Thank you!

  16. I’ve made this and thought it was great. My favourite thing in the book, though, is the soba noodles with aubergine and mango – it’s bursting with colour and flavour. Great blog.

  17. I’ve made this tart twice now and both times it was a huge hit with everyone at the party

  18. I have just bought this book as a gift for a veggie friend’s birthday. I am both (a) super stoked and (b) super jealous now that I have seen this tart. Is it dinner time yet?

  19. Sarah – Yes it is a shame as there are so many great desserts in the original Ottolenghi book. Still plenty of good stuff in there though.

    Julie – Great to hear it was a success. I guess it depends on how thickly you slice things as to how long they take to roast.

    Sarah – I have made those noodles as well and I agree, just delicious

    Anon – So glad to hear that. It is a winner of a recipe.

    SusaneatsLondon – Such a great book – enjoy!

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