I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The *Best* Tomato Tart

Hi, guys! The first field ripened tomatoes arrived in the farmers market last week.

Not a huge crop yet.

And they aren't supermarket perfect. Field grown heirloom tomatoes are fragile and delicate, but so ripe and sweet and juicy. Yum.

I've been waiting, and thinking about making a tomato tart for weeks now.This is not a pizza! And it's just an idea I had, not a real recipe. I rate it A+ though, if I do say so myself.

Most of the online tart recipes call for puff pastry, which I don't care for with veggies, only for fruit tarts. And maybe call for a cheese and egg sort of custard which sounded like much too much work. I was trying for ''rustic'' and vaguely recalling the Julia Child tarts I made a few years again when I was working my way through the last Child cookbook.

Instead I made a traditional 2 crust pie crust.

 This mix was in the fridge so I used it to use it up. (Not great, a bit tough. But I was being lazy.)

I rolled one half out into a not very lovely circle.

The other half, the usual top crust, I rolled into little logs and used to make an edging, a little wall to hold the cheese.

Crimped it pretty. Put in fridge.

Tomatoes prep: I sliced the tomatoes a scant quarter inch.

Layered them on a plate and paper towels,

with another plate on top. I salted them lightly, too, to draw out the juice. We don't want watery soggy tarts, do we?

I let the tomatoes rest about 1/2 hour. I preheated oven to 425*, baked the tart shell for 10 minutes, unfilled.

Filling: I used two kinds of cheese: first, a very ripe brie, cut in thin slices. I set the brie slices all over the pie shell, then layered on the tomatoes. [Gently wipe off the salt as you work.]

I used lots of herbs, dried because I didn't have fresh on hand, but fresh would be wonderful. I was going for a Not Pizza vibe, so no basil or oregano. Used a lot of tarragon, fennel seeds, black pepper, lemon pepper. A sprinkle of sugar.

The second cheese is just a supermarket crumbled goat cheese. Spread on the top.

Baked for about 35 minutes.
The brie sort of melts away to a creamy sauce, the goat cheese remains intact on top.

I should have photographed the tart slice with the big sweet butter lettuce I served on the side. The tart experiment was a success! It came out just as I pictured. I loved the pop and surprise of the non-traditional for tomatoes herbs, and the sweetness of the tomatoes and the brie. (Only the crust needs work. Next time I will make homemade.)

I'll definitely make it again. we loved it!(Though I suppose it it sky high in calories?) My kids and I are not terrible fond of uncooked tomatoes so this is a beautiful way to use the farmers market's field picked sweet tomatoes.
I also reheated the leftover section of the tart and cut it into small squares to serve at ''cocktail'' time the following day. Wonderful first course.

Try it! Or a version. Stay away from traditional pizza cheeses but you can sub feta or ricotta insalata for the goat cheese.

Final market note--I must show you the last of the peonies.

 Aren't the golf ball-y buds adorable.

And here's some of her cute vintage containers. This week she used old glass milk bottles. I love it. (Te seller probably thinks I'm a nutcase, oohing and aaahing over her milk bottles,lol!)

Now on to zinnias. In coffee cans?

PS I love hearing what you all are cooking--or NOT cooking! I plan to make Kelley's mango salsa, from last week's comments, to go with a grilled, marinated pork tenderloin. Doesn't that sound delicious! Thanks, Kel!



gone to the beach.....


  1. Your tart looks beautiful! I can't believe you actually had leftovers. Thanks for sharing, I love tomatoes any way I can get them and this recipe will go on the list. I feel like I'm gearing up to get back in the kitchen. I was on a 'breakfast for dinner' kick this week. I'm really slacking.

    What a nice surprise to still see some peonies, and the milk bottles are so charming. If the flower lady is a kindred spirit she understands your oohing and aaahing.

    I hope you like the salsa, and it will be dee-lish with the pork.

    Hope you and yours have a wonderful weekend. Give Mo a rub down for me.


    1. Mo crashed my computer last night! He is very bad. Lucky for me my son fixed it.

      You cabn used the Pillsbury crusts that are in the supermarket cool case, by the milk. They are rooled up and in a box and are really good. Then all you have to do is add some tomatoes and chese, so easy. Nicer than Cheerios at the end of a day---add a nice salad too?

      Your friend's Fussy the Cat store is delightful. Such a beauty too, I hope Fussy gets a forever home soon.


    2. sorry for all the typos. Mo is helping, I blame him.

    3. LOL, Mo is being a little turd.


  2. Hmm, I wonder if pizza dough would work better as a crust? Or crescent roll dough? Looks good!

    I bet the peony lady DOES cut the buds and keep them chilled! The trick is that you have to let the bud pop open first - otherwise they won't open and bloom. She must have a big fridge somewhere to still have flowers! Nice way to keep them around though - I always liked peony bouquets.

    I used to bring in more cut flowers until I had kitties - they tend to EAT them. And if I leave the flowers alone outdoors the wind and heat usually mean they only last a few days. LOL, I need a glass display box for flowers in the living room, to keep the cats out!

    I have tall garden phlox blooming, the perennial kind. And some marigolds from the seeds I planted. Not much of anything else right now.

    Have a good weekend!

    1. I was going for a Not Pizza thing, and I dont love pizza crust. But it should be whatevr you want. Next time I hope to try Lori's rustic tart crust, below. There s also an intersting cornmeal crust I hope to try.

      Pls save me some phlox seeds?

  3. That looks delicious. I have a recipe for a rustic tart crust, but I'm sure it is basic. What a great way to use up those wonderful tomatoes.

  4. i.m looking forward to tryingyour recipe when you get a chance to share it!


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