With the Young Baker now settled into her new environs at UC Santa Cruz, you…
This summery tart is part quiche, part ricotta pie – and wholly delicious! Perfect for dining al fresco, whether lunch, brunch, weekday dinner, or Meatless Monday – the Herbed Heirloom Tomato Tart is a summery dish that is at once creamy, luscious, and lightly filling with a delicately flaky crust. This is the first time I’ve added coconut oil and I think it made the crust even more tender than when made with only butter. The creaminess comes from using ricotta, which is also much lower in sodium than feta or aged cheese. For us, the fresh flavors of this sunny tart was a welcome departure from the rich multi-course feasts that marked last week’s festivities in China.
Our highly anticipated week in Shanghai was bursting with Grand Opening excitement, drama, speeches, interviews, endless discussion about the business climate and future prospects and, after three non-stop days, we were bursting at the seams from one business luncheon after another filled with tables of traditional Chinese hot dishes, dim sum, and desserts. Then a mere four hours later whisked by car (well, actually creeping by car through Shanghai’s gridlock of traffic) to exuberant three-hour celebratory dinners punctuated with congratulatory toasts until our minds were depleted of things or people to congratulate and we were one, as a family in the Chinese tradition, singing “We Are Family” in a private karaoke session and bonding over arm wrestling as Franklin D.Roosevelt looked on (more on this later) .
- 1-½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin coconut oil
- 1 large egg
- 8 ounces organic heirloom cherry tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons Colman’s mustard
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup shredded Emmi Le Gruyere*
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (I used Meyer lemon olive oil)
- 3 tablespoons chopped sweet onion
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
- 2 teaspoons fresh chopped rosemary leaves or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- Equipment: 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In a food processor or bowl, combine flour, butter and coconut oil. Whirl or cut in with pastry blender or two knives until fine crumbs form. Add egg and whirl or stir with a fork until dough holds together. Pat dough into a ball, then press evenly over bottom and sides of a 10-inch prepared (greased) tart pan with removable rim.
- Bake in oven until crust is pale gold, about 30 minutes.
- While the crust is baking, cut cherry tomatoes tomatoes in half lengthwise. In a small bowl, mix oil with onion, garlic, thyme, oregano and rosemary and stir into the ricotta.
- Remove baked crust from oven and turn oven to 400 degrees. Spread mustard over bottom of crust, add dollops of half the ricotta cheese mixture and spread evenly, dot with cherry tomato halves, then, sprinkle evenly with half the gruyere cheese, repeat with another layer.
- Bake until cheese is lightly browned, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven, let rest for 5 minutes. Remove pan rim. Cut into wedges and serve.