Fresh Tomato Tart
This Tomato Tart showcases both the look and taste of sweet, seasonal tomatoes. A pastry case holds the sliced tomatoes which are surrounded by a savoury custard made with eggs, cream and strong cheddar cheese. A few chopped chives are added to enhance the flavour.
This Tomato Tart can be eaten hot, warm or at room temperature. It is a great vegetarian make-ahead recipe which can be served at lunch or dinner or taken on a picnic.
I make a lot of tomato-based dishes but in many of them the tomatoes are reduced to a sauce. The taste is great but it doesn’t look so pretty! My aim was to create a tart where their beauty and variety could be seen as well as their taste enjoyed. There are so many different varieties now available in stores, or to grow in your garden, in such a range of sizes and colours from yellow to orange to deep red. They look beautiful and are great eaten just as they are in salads or as an accompaniment to cold dishes. However, I came up with the idea for my Tomato Tart because I wanted a cooked dish which retained their beautiful colours and shapes as well as highlighting their taste.
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What you need to know about this Tomato Tart recipe
- I generally make my own pastry. I was a late learner when it came to pastry and for years used ready-made versions. However, a few years ago I decided I had to get to grips with pastry-making and discovered how easy it is. So, if you have the time to make your own pastry, it is really worth doing as the taste will be much better than anything you can buy in the shops. However, if you don’t have the time or inclination, you can make this recipe using ready-made pastry and it will still taste pretty good.
- Whether you are making your own pastry or using ready-made, it is really important to bake the empty pastry case in the oven for 15 minutes before you add the filling (step 3). This sets the pastry and means that it is properly cooked so it will be crisp and delicious rather than soft and soggy.
- You can easily remove the skins from the tomatoes by immersing them in boiling water and then cooling them down in cold water (step 4). Make sure that you don’t leave them in the boiling water for too long or they will start to cook and may go a bit mushy.
- I use a strong, extra-mature cheddar cheese in this recipe. You can use other hard cheeses but make sure you use one with a strong flavour. You need this to balance the sweetness of the tomatoes.
- In this recipe, I add chopped chives to the Tomato Tart. I often add chives to a tomato salad and think that the combination works well together. However, you could use other herbs if you prefer. I think basil or oregano would be good alternatives.
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Other quiche and tart recipes
Savoury tarts and quiches are a fantastic, cook-ahead simple supper or lunch. They are easy to make and are great either hot or at room temperature. They can also be easily divided into portions if you are feeding a large number of people. Easily transportable, they also make a good addition to lunch-boxes or basis for a picnic. Some of my favourites are listed below.
- Asparagus Quiche is a simple quiche-style savoury tart that highlights the taste of fresh asparagus. I also have a very simple Asparagus and Herb Cheese Tart which uses ready-made puff pastry.
- Two kinds of onion tart – Caramelised Onion Tart which is based on sweet, slow-cooked onions and another version, Onion Tart with Wild Garlic, which has the addition of fresh herbs. I also have an easy Shallot Tart with Thyme and Anchovy which uses ready-made puff pastry.
- I also have two very different carrot-based tarts. Carrot and Coriander Tart combines these two classic flavours in a simple quiche-style savoury tart. Carrot Tart uses ready-made puff pastry and combines large pieces of carrot with orange and soft cheese.
- Beetroot Tart is deliciously sweet and earthy.
- Spinach Tart combines leaf green spinach with feta and crunchy pine-nuts.
- Butternut Squash Tart with Chilli and Sage also has a sweetness to it but this is off-set by the addition of a little hot chilli.
- Feta Quiche with Roasted Peppers is a fantastic comination of rich, smoky roasted peppers with salty feta cheese.
- If you love garlic, you will like my Garlic Tart which is a celebration of one of my favourite flavours!
- I also have a couple of fish-based recipes. My Crab and Prawn Tart has Asian-inspired flavours of coriander, lime and chilli. My Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns is easy to make and is perfect for a celebratory meal or party.
- In addition to larger quiches and tarts, I also have a recipe for individual Herb Tartlets which are great as canapes or snacks.
Fresh Tomato Tart recipePrint
This make-ahead, vegetarian Tomato Tart using sweet, juicy tomatoes, fresh chives and tangy cheese is the perfect choice for a summer lunch or picnic.
For the pastry:
- 275 g (10 oz) plain flour
- 125 g (4 oz) fat (I use a mix of half butter and half Trex as I think this makes the lightest pastry)
- A little water
For the filling:
- 150 ml (5 fluid oz) double cream
- 4 eggs
- 150 g (5 oz) strong cheddar cheese (grated)
- Salt and pepper
- A large bunch of fresh chives (around 15 stems)
- 6–7 assorted tomatoes – I use various sizes and colours as I think it looks nice!
- Set your oven to 180 C, 350 F or Gas Mark 4.
- Make the pastry. Put the flour in a bowl. Add the fat and combine – either by “rubbing in” by hand or processing – until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Season with salt and pepper. Add a little cold water (2-3 tbsp) and shape the mixture into a dough.
- Roll out your pastry and use it to line your quiche or flan dish. Bake for 15 minutes in the oven to allow the pastry to “set”. This will stop the filling making it soggy.
- Remove the skins from your tomatoes. I find the easiest way to do this is to immersing them in boiling water for around 1 minute and then immersing in cold water to cool them down (so that they are not too hot to handle and do not continue to “cook”). The skins should then be easy to peel off the tomatoes.
- When you have skinned the tomatoes, slice them into thin discs.
- Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl, add the cream, and beat until combined. Finely grate the cheddar cheese and add to the mixture.
- Chop your fresh chives and add them to the egg, cream and cheese mixture and season with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into your pastry case.
- Place the tomato discs on top of the mixture in the pastry case.
- Place your quiche or flan dish in the oven and cook for 25 minutes.
- The tart can be eaten hot, room temperature or cold.
Keywords: tomato, tart
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