Size is everything…..


The priapic appearance of courgettes and cucumbers has been known to engender lewd and goatish thoughts but. if one intends to eat the vegetable, the promise of satisfaction is illusory and disappointment the climax. Size is indeed everything, and in the case of courgettes even more so. The smaller the better. At this point the audience booed and started to leave the theatre…this was not the show that the hoardings had suggested. For those still in their seats, there is a happy ending.

In the beginning there was a gift of courgettes. The gifter had started to prepare them but, as she was going on holiday that day, realised that they would go to waste unless they were entrusted to someone who liked to cook…so our friend gave them to me. From the look of the hefty chunks, these courgettes had been of dildoic proportion and I feared the worst. I’ve recently suffered some disappointments at the hands of courgettes particularly if I’ve tried to do more than is necessary to them. Courgettes are wonderful when sliced, thrown into a pan of bubbling hot butter, allowed to take on a golden colour and eaten hot and immediately. They don’t like too much foreplay in my experience…a simple “yes” is sufficient for the willing courgette. As it happened, my chunky pieces of vegetable didn’t have the look of “yes” about them, so I respected their wishes and took out my mandolin. A quick serenade and they were in ribbons. No sooner had this happy state been achieved than my mind turned to the previously mentioned goatish thoughts.goat_cheese_bio_0005 Good goat cheese, courgette ribbons, and a golden pastry crust are a particularly well suited ménage à trois and with the addition of cream and eggs they become like a quiet evening at home with Jack Nicholson in the good old days. But, for all this promised joy, it is important to find a worthy goat cheese. We are lucky to have the simplest, freshest goat cheeses readily available. I would advise against any sort of “log” in this recipe, unless it is of the pedigree of St.Maure or of that ilk. A crisp pre baked short pastry shell is the sine qua non of this recipe, although I use the word recipe in the loosest way as I cobbled this together and have no clear memories of quantities. For someone like myself, who always cooks to recipes, this is unusual. In truth I had googled several recipes and put three of them together. From one I took the advice of brushing a coating of beaten egg on the pre baked, pastry shell and returning it to the oven to gain the shimmering gloss of a freshly varnished wooden boat. Another recipe suggested the ribbons of courgette and the advice of not browning them in butter before they went into the tart. The third recipe suggested the soft goat cheese.

The coming together was very satisfying.


About Food,Photography & France

Photographer and film maker living in France. After a long career in London, my wife and I have settled in the Vendee, where we run residential digital photography courses with a strong gastronomic flavour.
This entry was posted in 2014, Baking, Cheese, courgette, Cream, creme fraiche, Digital photography, Eggs, Expectation, food, Food and Photography, Food photographer, France, goat cheese, Humour, Photography, photography course, Recipes, Sex, tart, Uncategorized, Vegetables, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

47 Responses to Size is everything…..

  1. margaret21 says:

    I didn’t have you down as a ‘stick to the recipe’ kind of guy. Your photos show such luscious dishes that seem to bear a very personal stamp.

    • I like to cook from recipes written by people whose food I admire and whose writing I respect. Such people don’t write very complicated recipes and just point the way. Quantities are my bug bear. I’m always making too much for a household of two 🙂

  2. Lovely pastry. My in-laws’ courgette plants have gone crazy this year. I think this is what I’ll make after visiting them this weekend.

  3. Mad Dog says:

    Another sexy tart! I’m with you all the way on the size – tiny courgettes are the best along with their flowers 😉

  4. Loved the photo and the multiple double entendres. Very entertaining, Roger!

  5. One of the rare occasions when smaller is better. Gorgeous tart and as for “they become like a quiet evening at home with Jack Nicholson in the good old days” – still chuckling 😉

  6. Love the article 🙂

  7. Conor Bofin says:

    Not many if the food blogs make me laugh. Bravo. Nice tart too.

  8. A beautifully layered tart. I see a lovely crusted bottom and the custard has flawless consistency. (I can tell) It’s perfect.

  9. Beautiful pictures and a hilarious post- you’ve covered all your bases!

  10. Made me laugh and drool at the same time. You have a gift. 🙂

  11. Amanda says:

    I love summer gifts of produce. What a beautiful tart. I really like zucchini. Bravo.

  12. Beautiful tart – agreed though, in the land of cukes & zukes, the smaller the better 🙂

  13. After our last CSA cycle, I must agree. The smaller, the better. That looks divine. I wanted to eat my screen.

    • That sounds like a comment that appeared in a satirical English magazine, Private Eye, some years ago. It printed this headline from an American paper “John Wayne has licked the big C” adding a reply “Our medical correspondent notes that this is a very unwise move” 🙂

  14. EllaDee says:

    Happy National Zucchini Day – truly. Apparently 8 August is it. Although your gifter was a little premature, it’s traditional to “Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbors’ Porch…” That she did so was the gift that kept on giving with both skillful hilarious, and culinary embellishment from you 🙂

  15. I can tell, that it was fun for you to write, same fun I had to read….at times I get so much into your prose that I forget that it’s about a beautiful tart…. how come that this happens….? Looking at your tart makes we wanting to go into my kitchen right now, but my time clock is 9:30 pm ocean California time.

  16. This sounds like a perfect meal. I shall remember the hint about the goats cheese as I am not a fan of the flavour of the log ones here 🙂

  17. I’ve fond myself inspired. Thanks.

  18. ardysez says:

    The delicate colours and layers of that tart are sublime, as is your writing. Of all the things one could miss from not being able to eat wheat, pies and quiche are the greatest losses. But at least I’ve eaten, and made, my share over the years, so that I can truly appreciate your artistry.

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