CRU TOMATO TART
This tart or tomato pie as most people will call it, is utterly delicious. My mother-in-law and I may have fought once over the last piece at one time or another. It’s that good.
Salting and draining the tomatoes will help with the crust becoming soggy, but they will still be very juicy and fresh tasting.
By Executive Chef Erin Zircher
2 c. all purpose flour
1 T sugar
1 t. kosher salt
1/2 c. unsalted butter, cubed
2/3 c. water
½ t. dry yeast
½ c. mayonnaise or crème fraiche
1 t. Dijon mustard
1 c. shredded mozzarella
1 c. shredded cheddar
4 tomatoes- sliced and salted
1 heaping cup basil leaves, torn or roughly chopped
12 inch tarte pan with removable sides - spray with pan spray
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. Add the cubed, chilled butter. With your fingers, work the butter into the flour mixture until it is almost entirely broken into pea sized pieces. In a large measuring cup combine the water and yeast. Add the liquid to the flour mixture. Using a fork, combine until the mixture is evenly moistened. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for a minute or so until the dough comes together. (*Being careful not to overwork the dough, which will make it tough.) Shape into a ball and cover with a piece of plastic wrap (the butter wrapper is also a great cover for the dough). Let the dough rest for about 1 hour. The dough will slightly puff, but not double in size.
Core and slice the tomatoes into thin slices with a serrated knife. Lay the slices on a cooling rack set over a sheet tray. Sprinkle the tomatoes with sea salt and let them rest as you prepare the rest of the tart. This will help remove some of the moisture from the tomatoes, helping to prevent sogginess. (The tomato water can be frozen as ice cubes for your next bloody mary.)
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Spray a 12 inch tart pan, with a removable bottom, with pan spray. Roll out the dough on a floured surface and gently move it to the pan. Tuck the dough to fit the mold, trimming the tiny bit of excess dough the hangs over the edge. Using a fork, dock the dough 10 times in different areas, creating holes, which will prevent the dough from rising. Place the prepared pan with the dough in the freezer for 5 minutes to slightly chill. Then bake for 10 minutes.
Bake at 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Allow the crust to cool 10 minutes or longer before proceeding.
Spread with cheese mix, top with basil, then sliced tomatoes in any desired pattern. Top with a grinding of fresh black pepper. Bake another 20 minutes.
Serve the tart slightly warm or room temperature. It is a wonderful light lunch. Drizzled with olive oil and served with an arugula salad.
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