Heirloom Tomato Tart
Heirloom tomatoes may seem flawed, but it’s actually their uniformly red counterparts who are the genetic deviants of the tomato family. Decades ago, many businesses decided to prioritize cookie-cutter-like hybrid tomatoes, which grow year-round and can survive a long, bumpy journey. It left heirloom tomatoes on the wrong side of the deal. The varieties that remain have a shorter shelf life and are relegated to just a few months of summer, but they’re sweeter with a more robust flavor. This tart celebrates juicy, vibrant tomatoes in a cheesy, herby, custard-filled, flaky crust, with each bite punctuated with pesto.
- Serves: 4 persons
- Dough for a 9-inch single crust pie, or use store-bought, rolled into an 11-inch round (see Note)
- 1 ½pounds ripe heirloom tomatoes (about 4 medium)
- ¼cup store-bought pesto
- ¾cup shredded mozzarella (about 3 ounces)
- 1tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil
- 1tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano
- 3large eggs
- ⅓cup heavy cream
- ½teaspoon kosher salt
- ½teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Step 1Heat oven to 350 degrees. Fit the rolled-out dough into a 9-inch tart pan, allowing the edges to rise about 1/4 inch above the rim of the pan. Prick the dough all over with a fork.
Step 2Line the dough with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes until beginning to brown at the edges. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the foil and weights. Increase the oven temperature to 375 degrees.
Step 3Meanwhile, cut the tomatoes into 1/2-inch slices. Place in a colander to drain excess tomato liquid for 20 minutes.
Step 4Spread 1/4 cup pesto in an even layer over the parbaked tart crust. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella over the pesto. Sprinkle the fresh basil and oregano over the cheese.
Step 5In a medium bowl, prepare the custard: Whisk together the eggs, cream, salt and pepper until combined.
Step 6Place the sliced tomatoes evenly over the cheese and herbs in overlapping concentric circles.
Step 7Pour the custard evenly over the tomato slices. Swirl the pan to evenly distribute the liquid. Bake until the filling is set and won’t jiggle when shaken, about 35 minutes.
Step 8Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving warm. This tart can also be served at room temperature.