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Sometimes I feel like everyone makes pastry except me. Why can I attack a mountain of pickles or an avalanche of pecans without batting an eye, but the thought of rolling out a flaky pastry crust sends me straight to the frozen food case…??!!
I mean, I do buy an organic pie crust made without icky shortening products, but half the time its frozen crankiness splits down the middle, and the rest of the time the filling soaks in and renders it less-than-flaky.
So when I got a look at this sweet corn and these heirloom tomatoes I knew the time had come to GET REAL. (Plus my sister gave me a cookbook for my b-day that had a free form pastry crust in it that was calling my name!)
I started this recipe at 11:00 in the morning. Fueled up with coffee and alone in the house it was now or never! I’m proud to report the dang dough worked! I sandwiched it between two pieces of plastic wrap and rolled it out – genius advice from the book!
This coming after I worked the butter into the flour with my fingers…”rubbed the butter into the flour,” in the words of my new cookbook, which blithely stated, “why bother with a food processor for such a small job, it hardly seems worth getting it dirty…” AGREED. (Plus…our dishwasher broke this weekend, so while we’re waiting for some repair help I’m trying to avoid using anything that needs to be washed…)
I smeared the raw dough with some pesto I had left from another “project,” and then scattered fresh corn niblets and a little white cheese under the glorious tomatoes I honored with my first-ever pastry dough!
1 Recipe Pastry Dough, rolled into a 12 inch round and chilled
1/3 cup fresh Basil Pesto
1 ½ cups fresh corn, blanched and cut off cobs
3 heirloom tomatoes, assorted colors, sliced
½ cup mild white cheese, Monterey jack or your choice
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water
Place a pizza stone in the oven and heat oven to 375 degrees.
Place Pastry Dough round on a sheet of parchment paper covering a baking sheet.
Spread Basil Pesto over dough, leaving a 1 ½ inch edge all the way around.
Scatter corn and cheese over round.
Arrange tomato slices over the ingredients, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Fold the edge up and over the filling, forming loose pleats. (If dough has become too soft to form, return tart to the refrigerator to chill dough.) Brush border with egg yolk.
Slide the parchment paper with the tart off the baking sheet onto the pizza stone. (Another great tip from the book!) Bake 45 minutes, until browned and filling is sizzling.
Cut into wedges and serve. Equally good warm or at room temperature!
Recipe adapted from Cooking from the Farmers’ Market.