Thursday, December 8, 2011

Savory Tomato Tart with Feta and Basil

If you've been reading this blog for a while, then you've heard me say lots of times how much I love making breakfast on Saturday and Sunday.  It's the most relaxing time of the week, unless of course I have to be up early and get dressed to go somewhere, but when there's nowhere to go, and it's a little chilly and cloudy out, and people are still sleeping in, the world just seems at peace.

A new, unread magazine makes the morning even better.  Coffee.  A blanket to curl up under on the couch.

As I listen to the bubbling and steaming of the coffee maker, I start thinking about what I might make for breakfast - maybe some kind of omelet or frittata using leftover meat and veggies from dinner the night before, or once in a while pancakes or waffles.

Last weekend, I actually planned ahead, though, because I'd been dreaming of a savory tomato tart.

While some people dream of a white Christmas (I do dream of that, too, though) I dream of recipes.  Of baking pans and cooking tools.  Of new, unknown ingredients to try.  Of perfecting my chocolate chip cookie recipe.  I also dream of how to stay in shape while not giving up my baking obsession and not going to the gym regularly, but I haven't figured that one out yet...

I'm also dreaming of what I could have done with all the tomatoes in my parents garden if only they'd picked them before they froze.  I've been meaning to do some more canning, especially since a few friends were interested in helping, and if only we had all those tomatoes to make salsa and marinara sauce!

The tomato tart was everything I hoped it would be.  I started with a pastry crust, fitted into a tart pan so that the edges were extra pretty.  A layer of feta cheese, mixed with some red onion and basil.  Topped with slices of Roma tomatoes and pretty little golden cherry tomatoes.  And to finish it off, a drizzle of olive oil, and some salt and pepper.

I topped each slice of the tomato tart with a fried egg (poached would be great, too).  Wouldn't you just fall in love with this breakfast?

The tart also kept really well for leftovers for several days, and after being warmed up slightly, it still tasted as if it was fresh from the oven.  Although it takes a little bit of planning since it takes almost an hour to bake, and needs to sit for 20-30 minutes after that, it would be an irresistible dish to serve for brunch - maybe even Christmas morning?

Tomato Tart with Feta and Basil
printable recipe
  • 1 pie crust
  • 8 ounces Feta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 2 tablespoons diced red onion
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, divided
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced into 1/8 inch slices
  • 12 sweet golden cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 F.  Spray a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom with non-stick spray.

Roll the pie dough out so that it's large enough to fit in the pan with a 1-inch overhang.  Settle the dough into the pan, fold the overhang under all around the sides to create a thick crust and gently press against the edges.  Place in the freezer to chill while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

With an electric mixer, combine the Feta, milk, egg and corn starch and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until well blended.  Mixture will still be lumpy from the Feta.  Stir in the diced onion and 2 tablespoons chopped basil.  Spread the cheese mixture into the chilled crust.

Arrange the Roma tomato slices on top of the cheese in concentric circles.  Arrange the golden cherry tomato halves on top.  Drizzle the tomatoes with the olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper, and top with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon chopped basil.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the crust begins to turn golden.  Remove from the oven and let sit for 20-30 minutes before slicing.

The tart is wonderful for brunch, with a poached or fried egg served on top of each slice.

Yields 8 servings.