Rustic Tomato & Cheese Tart

August and September are the best months to enjoy Ontario tomatoes in all their juicy and flavourful glory, but this tart tastes good with Ontario greenhouse tomatoes year-round.

This tart uses a buttermilk biscuit dough for the base and your favourite cheese or blend of cheeses.  It looks lovely in its rustic form, so don’t worry about shaping the crust perfectly. It makes about 6 servings and goes well with a green salad.

Tip:  Reesor’s Market & Bakery carries Kawartha Dairy Buttermilk or  you can make your own buttermilk substitute by adding 1 Tbsp of lemon juice to 3/4 cup of milk and waiting 5 minutes for it to thicken.

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Rustic Tomato and Cheese Tart

• 1 recipe Buttermilk Biscuit Dough (see recipe below)
• 2 Tbsp cornmeal or semolina flour
• all-purpose flour, for rolling
• about 1/3 cup feta cheese (or your favourite cheese)
• 3 to 4 medium, ripe tomatoes, cored and sliced crosswise ¼ inch thick
• Salt
• about 2/3 cup coarsely grated Gruyère (or your favourite cheese)
• 1/3 cup mayonnaise (Hellman’s Light works well)
• 1/3 cup finely chopped mixed fresh herbs such as parsley, basil and chives
• ½ tsp. dried oregano or marjoram
• Freshly ground black pepper

Position rack in the center of the over and preheat to 425 F.  Sprinkle a 12×17 sheet of parchment with the cornmeal or semolina flour.

On the cornmeal, pat the prepared biscuit dough into a 5-inch round.  Using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough into a 13-inch round, lightly dusting with all-purpose flour to keep the dough from sticking, if necessary.  Transfer the dough on the parchment to a large baking sheet.

Crumble the feta cheese over the dough, leaving a 1½-inch border.

Arrange the tomatoes over the dough in two flat, slightly overlapping concentric circles, lightly salting each circle as you go, leaving a  1½-inch border.

Combine the Gruyère, mayonnaise, herbs and pepper in a small bowl.  Dollop the mixture in generous tablespoons over the tomatoes. The tomatoes do not need to be completely covered. Fold the dough border over the edges of the tomatoes, pleating the dough if necessary.

Bake until the crust is golden-brown and the tomatoes are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.  Let cool on a wire rack, about 30 minutes, before cutting into wedges and serving.  You can also serve it at room temperature.

(Adapted from Fine Cooking magazine, Aug/Sept 2013)

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