Store-bought puff pastry is a gift to vegan cooks, as most major brands are dairy-free, but check before purchasing. This pie is particularly attractive and is a taste sensation.
1 (15-oz.) can navy beans 2 tbsp. nondairy milk 2 tbsp. vegan pesto sea salt and pepper 2 heads fresh fennel 1 red bell pepper, seeded and halved 6 tomatoes, peeled and thickly sliced 1/2 tsp. coriander seeds 1/4 tsp. fennel seeds 2 1/2 tbsp. olive oil 1 tsp. lemon juice 1 sheet puff pastry
Preheat oven to 375°F. In a food processor, combine the beans, nondairy milk, and pesto, and process until smooth. Season, and set aside. Trim the base of the fennel, and remove and discard the long green stalks. Cut into 8 wedges and place in a saucepan. Cover with boiling water and simmer for 10 minutes, drain thoroughly, and cool. Meanwhile, put the bell pepper under a hot broiler and cook until the skin blackens, turn and repeat until the whole pepper is charred. Wrap in plastic wrap, let cool, then remove the skin and slice. Carefully unwrap the pastry and lay it on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. (If you can’t find pastry sheets, roll out pastry into a rectangle 1/8 inch thick.) With a sharp knife, score a border 1 inch from the edge — this will rise to form the edge of the tart. Spread the bean purée on top of the pastry, taking care to stay within the scored line. Arrange the tomato slices on top, followed by the fennel and pepper. Lightly crush the coriander and fennel seeds and sprinkle over the vegetables with a little salt and pepper. Brush the outside border with olive oil, then drizzle the remaining oil and lemon juice over the vegetables. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until the pastry is risen and golden brown. Slip off the parchment paper and serve warm. Serves 6