Shrimp & Toasted Pumpkinseed Tart {ModBak}

If the idea of a green shrimp tart doesn’t immediately appeal to you, you’re not alone. My family refused to try this tart before I even made it, just based on the photo in the book. Nonetheless, I dutifully made the next recipe in the Modern Baker Challenge, knowing full well it would mostly be left uneaten.

This tart begins with a cornmeal pastry crust. The crust is essentially the same as the rich pastry dough used in many of the recipes in this section of the book, except that half of the AP flour is replaced with stone ground cornmeal. This results in a rich, savory crust with a hint of crunch, as well as a touch of yellow, from the cornmeal.

To make the pipian verde (Mexican green pumpkin seed sauce), I toasted the pumpkin seeds, then ground them in the food processor with aromatics, spices, and shrimp broth.

I cut the shrimp into bite sized pieces, then sautéed them in butter and cumin.

Don't they look like crawfish tails?

 After removing the shrimp from the pan, I returned the pipian verde to the pan, heated it through, then stirred in sour cream and the shrimp. I beat eggs in a bowl and stirred in the sauce and shrimp, then scraped it all into the shell

I baked the tart at 375°F for about 25 minutes, until the crust was baked and the tart set. I cooled the tart for a few moments, until I could remove the sides of the pan without burning myself.

Despite its appearance, this tart was quite flavorful. The serrano chiles gave it a gentle spice, and the pumpkin seeds lent an earthiness to the dish. The shrimp were well-cooked, and I found myself picking them out as I started to get full.

To my surprise, the kids ended up asking for (small) slices, and they both enjoyed it. Not enough to ask for seconds. But, hey, small steps are good, too.



  1. ap269 said,

    March 16, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    This is one of my definite skips, too. But not because of the greenish part, but because of the shrimps. Even had trouble looking at the pictures… Good job, though!

    • gaaarp said,

      March 16, 2011 at 4:58 pm

      I actually ended up wishing it had been a bit more green. Maybe some cilantro or parsley next time.

  2. March 15, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I missed this post didn i?
    Actually have not been getting notifications from the group 😦
    I had planned to bake many of the tarts but am sorry i didn but will sure fit atleast this one in soon.
    Urs looks fantastic and im thinking of minis too.
    BDw , i love the idea of the greens with Cilantro, only will have to sub some of the seeds coz i dont have enough pumpkin seeds and they arent as easily available here.

  3. Kayte said,

    March 9, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    That makes one very large green tart…hmmm…might give it a try in the mini version as I like all the ingredients, just not so sure about eating a green tart. Maybe. You make it sound good, so at least now I am in the “maybe” phase.

    • gaaarp said,

      March 9, 2011 at 7:08 pm

      This wan’t one I was dying to make, either. But it was good. I would have made a mini version, but I had all the ingredients for the full-size one, and the shrimp neede to be used up.

  4. Leslie said,

    March 1, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Are you kidding me? I could have eaten the entire thing but I’m allergic to shellfish. 😦 This sounds so delicious…maybe if you make the kids eat blindfolded? Or does that look bad if the neighbor stops by unannounced?

    • gaaarp said,

      March 1, 2011 at 6:13 pm

      Actually, both my kids are fairly adventurous when it comes to food. Probably because they’ve been exposed to lots of different foods from very young ages. Once when my oldest was about 2 1/2, we went to Bob Evans, and she asked the waitress, “Do you have Injera bread?”

  5. Sara said,

    February 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    I have to admit, this was one of the “definite skips” for me. (Not that I have made any of my homework assignments so far..). You were brave enough to try it!

    • gaaarp said,

      February 28, 2011 at 6:51 pm

      Yep, and I’m bound and determined to try the curried fish pie, too!

  6. Abby said,

    February 27, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    I’m so impressed you tried this…my hubby and I were not very enthusiastic after looking at the picture in the book either. 😉 But your description actually sounds pretty yummy!

    • gaaarp said,

      February 27, 2011 at 9:20 pm

      It’s good, if you can get past the color. Just think of it as a verde sauce, which is basically what it is.

  7. sallybr said,

    February 27, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    Great job! I would probably have skipped this recipe, but I bet you feel good for making it…

    Something about the shrimp in this type of dish doesn’t appeal to me, but if you give me a slice, I’ll eat it with a smile! 😉

    • gaaarp said,

      February 27, 2011 at 9:18 pm

      Thanks. Any other book, I would have skipped it, too. But taking on the Modern Baker Challenge for me meant dedicating myself to making ever recipe in the book.

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