When I was a kid my Mother worked very hard, first as a teacher and then as a swimming teacher for the Department of Education Australia. There were 4 of us , all girls, around the same age. I am not sure how she managed it but she popped out the four of us in about a 5.5 year period, before going back to work.
She supported my Dad through years of night school re-training to become a Teacher himself. This meant a lot of hungry mouths to feed and a lot of arguments to solve and a lot of solo parenting . She would arrive home and collapse on the couch for a well earned 30 minute power nap. During this time we would vie for her attention, disturbing her with questions and petty tiffs needing her adjudication. We were never sure that these disturbances would not result in an eruption of slaps aimed at no one in particular but the purpose to get rid of minor annoying buzzing children. Now I think of this and feel sorry for her desperately tired overworked state.
After work I sometimes try to just whip something up quickly. I have many ideas for these quick meals but the creativity is stifled as Skater ( the teenager) eats nothing that I regularly want to cook.
Pies are the pinnacle of the Teenage menu. The first pie this week was a Chicken, Red Pepper, Basil and Parmesan pie. Made with Roasted Chicken, from the fridge and a nice butter puff pastry. This was quickly gobbled up after photos were taken to show the girlfriend what an awesome dinner he was having (that’s positive). *like*
This ugly little fellow, is also a tart with Parmesan but with the addition of Ricotta and crunchy Fillo. It worked so well I thought they might be a great finger food for times when you need something small and cheesy to feed someone quickly ( maybe even someone out of their teens). So here’s the recipe
Cutting the edges before baking can make them neater and easier to handle if you prefer, these have semi dried tomatoes on top and a sprinkling of chives to ser
- 250gm ricotta
- 30 to 50 gm freshly grated Parmesan
- 1 Tablespoon chopped chives.
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 4 sheets of fillo pastry
- 2 Tablespoons butter ( melted) ( or more if you like a really crispy buttery pastry)
- Salt and Pepper
- Extra olive oil for drizzling
- Spray a mini muffin tin with a little cooking spray ( or paint with oil or butter)
- Lay four sheets of fillo on a bench and brush each sheet ( or for lower fat every second sheet) with a little melted butter. Push the pastry gently into the muffin holes. ( will reach 9 of the wholes)
- Next in a bowl using a spoon, mix the ricotta, ( feta) grated Parmesan , chives, olive oil and salt and pepper till well combined and spoon into each muffin whole on top of the Fillo. ( If using tomatoes or roasted peppers either mix through or pop on top. Drizzle with extra olive oil)
- Pop into the oven and bake until brown and crispy. (The bottoms should also be crispy ).
- Cool slightly and then break into ugly craggy tarts that are irresistible ( even for a Teenager and his girlfriend) You can also cut around the edges before cooking if you want a neater rounder tart ( like the ones shown above)