I spent the first 10 days of August in Texas for a work convention. The worst part about it (aside from not sleeping in my own bed and working 12 hours a day) was missing two — TWO! — farmers market weekends just as harvest season is beginning its peak. Well, I guess that and eating catered hotel food for over a week. Let’s just say by the time I got home I could not wait to pick up some fresh produce and cook something!
What I had somehow forgotten about while in Texas was that I had several tomato plants in my garden that were also producing up a storm while I was gone. I came home to more tomatoes than I know what to do with. I plan on taking a queue from the team at Orson Gygi and making some slow roasted tomatoes to freeze, as well as some homemade tomato sauce. I’m going to need to get creative, though, because by the looks of it I’m going to have an obscene amount of tomatoes in the next couple of weeks. So, if anyone wants some…
One of the first things that came to mind when I saw all the pretty tomatoes was a savory tomato tart. I am a SUCKER for tarts. Especially the slightly-messy-looking rustic ones. There’s just something so charming about them. For this tart, I started with this basic tart dough recipe and just added a few grinds of cracked pepper. Then I layered it up with caramelized onions, goat cheese, and tomatoes and baked it until the crust was just starting to brown and the tomatoes had shriveled a bit. And, oh man, was this tart delicious. For me, this tart highlights the beauty of summer harvest. Simple ingredients are all that you need when those ingredients are quality and in-season.
Okay, confession time: I’m not so great at recipes. When I get excited about a new dish I sometimes forget to pay attention to how much I’m using of each ingredient. But my favorite way to cook is using recipes that allow for some wiggle room and that’s what this is. A basic, delicious savory summer tart only really needs a good dough, fresh produce, and some cheese to make it a hit. The only thing that would have made this particular tart even better would have been a drizzle of balsamic glaze. Sadly, I was out. Luckily, it was still amazing.
Tomato & Goat Cheese Savory Tart
- Tart dough
- Half an onion, diced
- 1-2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- A mixture of delicious summer tomatoes, either sliced or halved* (I used an heirloom tomato and a handful of cherry and grape tomatoes)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- A few basil leaves, torn
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat a bit of olive oil in a pan over medium-low heat. Add the diced onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they soften and begin to caramelize, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
On a layer of parchment paper, roll out the tart dough until it’s about 1/8-1/4″ thick. Spread the cooked onions evenly over the dough, leaving about 1.5 inches of space around the edge and dot with crumbled goat cheese. Layer the tomatoes until the tart is filled and sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste.
Transfer dough and parchment paper to a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes until the crust is lightly browned, the tomatoes are shriveled, and the cheese is bubbly. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
*Note: I cleaned out the seeds and pulp from most of the small tomatoes I used. I’m not sure if this is totally necessary, but I was worried about my tart being too soggy. Do what feels right in your heart.