Tonight’s dinner was a work in progress during the day. It was one of those meals that you find a bit of time for, leave, and then come back to. Slow roasting the tomatoes for the tart took a while, and they really benefitted from being left in a hot oven (that I turned off) when we went out for the day.
I also roasted butternut for a soup – but that one was so simple, a recipe is kind of silly. I basically peeled and seeded a butternut, chopped it up, added a few tablespoons of olive oil and some spice – paprika, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg – salt and pepper, and roasted it in a hot oven (225 C / 450 F) until it was soft. I mashed it, put it in a pot, poured a cup of water over, and brought to the boil. Blended it to a puree, and added a touch of milk and adjusted spices. Pure butternut heaven!
I must admit, I used Whole Foods bought puff pastry (from Dufour – amazing stuff!) for the tart. You could use best quality puff pastry, or make a cheese pastry as per the spinach pie I did the other day. Either way, you want a flat pie – almost a pizza but better 😉
I roasted these tomatoes in a very hot oven for about 20 – 25 minutes – until they were very soft, slightly burnt and caramelised, but still holding their shape and size. I then flipped them over, turned the oven off, and went out – and when we got back home, the tomatoes were slightly dried – almost like semi-sun-dried tomatoes. They had intensified in colour and flavour, without losing their shape or size. Absolutely gorgeous. I recommend this if you can – roast for half an hour in the morning, and then just leave them there. When you get home, you will have an amazing tomato dinner waiting for you! These are soooo good in pasta, in a grilled cheese, in salad, soup, just about anywhere you need a pure shot of tomato flavour.
Roasted Semi Dried Tomatoes
You will definitely have extra left over. Seems a shame to roast these tomatoes for just the one tart! Anoint your extras with a bit of olive oil and save in the fridge.
- 10 – 12 juicy red tomatoes
- 1 – 2 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Basil (fresh or dried)
- 1 tsp light brown sugar
- 8 – 10 garlic cloves, sliced
Preheat oven to 225C (450F). Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Wash and dry the tomatoes. Slice them thickly (about 3 – 4 slices per fruit), destem if you feel the need, and arrange in a single layer on your baking sheet. Sprinkle olive oil judiciously over all.
Sprinkle with salt, pepper, basil and sugar. Add sliced garlic (I usually stick one or two on top of each tomato slice).
Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until the tomatoes are oozing juice, blistered a bit, but still holding their shape and size.
Take the baking sheet out of the oven, switch off the oven, and flip the tomatoes over. Put back into oven and leave for at least 2 hours if not the whole day.
Roasted Tomato Tart
- 1 large sheet puff pastry (or cheese crust pastry to line a baking sheet)
- 2 tbsp sour cream
- 2 tbsp ricotta or cottage cheese
- 1 tbsp cream cheese
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed or minced
- 1 egg
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 + 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
- Roasted tomatoes
Preheat oven to 180C (375F). Line a baking sheet or pan with parchment paper.
Remove parchment paper from the baking pan, and place flat on table. Place a sheet of puff pastry (or a square of your own made cheese pastry) onto the parchment.
Roll out the pastry to to a rectangle about 18″ by 12″ and then fold over the edges by about 2 inches all around. Pinch to make sure the folded over edges stick, and using a fork, prick holes in the centre of the pastry. Slide onto your baking sheet or pan, and bake for about 25 minutes, or until the pastry has puffed up and is a light golden brown.
If you are using puff pastry, remove from the oven, and dig out about half of the centre layers. You will have very puffed edges, and a crisp centre.
Beat together the sour cream, ricotta, cream cheese, garlic, egg, salt and pepper and 1/4 cup of grated cheese. Pour into the centre of the pastry.
Arrange the roasted tomatoes on top of the mixture, and sprinkle with the remaining grated cheese, making sure you dont cover the tomatoes completely.
Bake in the oven for a further 20 minutes or so, or until the centre is puffed and browned.
Slice into pieces and enjoy! This can be served at room temperature, or even from the fridge the next day and is still very scrummy.