I’ve always been fascinated by the human condition. What’s that supposed to mean, I hear you ask. Well rather than explain myself with some psychobabble (I could do that you know. I could write a load of pompous twaddle which you might or might not agree with) I shall give you a real-life example.
Now for some reason people act entirely differently when driving a car, compared to, say, sitting on the toilet. Not a great comparison but it’s all I can think of. A (female) psychiatrist wrote this was because a car represents one of the last few remaining expressions of territoriality, where the individual feels cocooned and protected from the outside world. It’s like a metal womb on wheels. And it needs to be defended at all costs from the marauding enemy (that is, everyone else on the road; especially cyclists).
Which might go some way to explaining why I can’t behave myself in my car. Only the other day I had the following experience:
‘No, I will not pull over Mr Crappy-2.0-litre-BMW-X1-shite-mobile, just because you want to get in front of me. What I will do is accelerate away from you every time you get near my bumper and then slow down again so you can catch me up.
Then, once you start tailgating me again I will accelerate away from you again and leave you standing, because you don’t have the power to keep up. You tosser. And I will repeat this all the way to the M3. You arse-gap. Then I will stay in the middle lane whilst you zoom passed me only to move into the middle lane to and stay there. Prick.
Anyway the connection between this diatribe on the foibles of modern man and Roasted Vegetable Pastry Slice are spurious to say the least. Actually there is no connection at all, I just felt like venting spleen.
I could talk about the calming properties of feta cheese, or the smoothing powers of roasted shallots but come on we all know the best way to calm down after a stressy commute is to grab a glass of Jack D with ice and a decent Cuban, and watch The Simpsons (re the Cuban: I am referring to the rolled tobacco product nothing else. And if you’re American…well sorry about that)
Roasted Vegetable Pastry Slice
- 1 block puff pastry
- 2 tbsp pesto
- 12 shallots
- Punnet cherry tomatoes
- 1 block feta cheese
- 7 or 8 spring onions
- Good Glug Olive oil
- Large handful fresh basil
- Dash Balsamic vinegar
- Salt and Pepper
First heat the oven to 180 Centigrade. Peel the shallots and place in a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and cook for about 10 mins.
Meanwhile lay the pastry on another baking tray, lined with greaseproof paper.
Spread the pesto over the pastry leaving a 1 inch gap around the edge.
Chop up the spring onions, halve the tomatoes and break up the feta cheese into chunks. Sprinkle the spring onions over the pastry, then add the tomatoes.
Lastly add the cheese and the onions and half the basil. Season with salt and pepper.
Brush the edges of the pastry with beaten egg and bake for 5 mins.
Remove from the oven and if the pastry is browning too quickly, cover with strips of foil and return to the oven so the centre continues to cook for 5 to 7 minutes more.
Remove from the oven, sprinkle on the remaining basil and serve.
Serve straight up, or with some salad and mayo, and of course you’ll need a glass of cold white wine!