Summer Tomato Tart scented with basil
Recipe from 'Kitchen Secrets' by Raymond Blanc. Click here to purchase book.
The perfect tart to serve in the summer months, when tomatoes are at their best.
Preparation: 20 mins, plus 30 minutes resting.
Special equipment: peel (optional), baking stone (optional).
|For the tart bases|
|125g||All-butter puff pastry (*1)|
|For the filling|
|½||Medium onion, peeled and finely chopped|
|3 tbsp||Extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing|
|½ tsp||Thyme leaves|
|2 pinches||Sea salt|
|1 pinch||Freshly ground black pepper|
|Est 30||Cherry tomatoes, halved (*2)|
|6||Baby mozzarella balls, thinly sliced|
|8||Black olives, stoned and cut into thirds|
|8||Basil leaves, roughly torn|
The puff pastry rounds can be shaped in advance, placed on a baking sheet, covered and frozen or refrigerated.
To prepare the tart bases
Cut the puff pastry into two equal portions and shape into balls. Roll each one out on a lightly floured surface to an 18–20cm round, 2mm thick (*3). Place the pastry rounds on a lightly floured tray and freeze for 5 minutes (*4). Transfer the pastry rounds to a peel or flat tray lined with greaseproof paper. Trim to neat 16cm discs, using a sharp knife and a plate as a guide. Run the tip of a knife around the edge of the pastry about 1cm in from the edge, making a shallow indent, to create a border. Place in the fridge and leave to rest for 30 minutes while you prepare the filling.
To prepare the onion
In a small pan over a low heat, soften the onion in the extra virgin olive oil with the thyme leaves, salt and pepper for about 8 minutes; do not allow the onion to colour. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary, then set aside to cool.
To prepare for baking
Preheat the oven to 230ºC/Gas 8. Place a baking stone or baking tray on the middle shelf to heat up.
To assemble the tarts
Take the puff pastry rounds out of the fridge. Spread with the onion mixture, within the border, and top with the tomato halves, packing them tightly together and overlapping them slightly (*5). Brush the tomatoes and the edges of the puff pastry with extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
To bake the tomato tarts
Carefully slide the tomato-topped puff pastry rounds onto the preheated baking stone or tray in the oven (*6) and bake for 12 minutes. Remove the tarts from the oven and distribute the sliced mozzarella and olives over the tomatoes. Bake for a further 2 minutes to melt the mozzarella, then remove and set aside to rest for 5 minutes.
To finish and serve
Garnish the tomato tarts with torn basil and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil. Spoon over a little of the pistou, if serving, and hand the rest around separately.
Recipe from 'Kitchen Secrets' by Raymond Blanc, published by Bloomsbury.
Recipe © Raymond Blanc 2011.
Photograph © Jean Cazals 2011.