Tomato and St. George Cheese Tart

tomato tart

For the pastry:
1 c. flour
6 T. butter
1/4 t. salt
1/4 c. ice cold water

For the filling:
1 lb. onions
1 1/2 lbs. vine ripe tomatoes
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
6 sprigs basil
1/2 lb. St. George cheese, a good farmhouse white cheddar or Cantal can be substituted
1 egg
1 T. milk

Mix the salt and flour together. Cut the butter into smallish pieces. In a mixer or by hand cut the butter into the flour. Leave some of the pieces of butter in bigger pieces. Add most of the water and mix briefly, just till the dough comes together. If needed, add the rest of the water. The dough should be moist but not overly wet. Turn out onto a flat surface and knead briefly. Wrap in a plastic bag or plastic wrap. Flatten into a disk and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to rest. This can be made the day before.

Peel and thinly slice the onions. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add the onions and a sprig of basil, cook until quite soft. This will take up to 30 minutes. Season with salt to taste. If the onions are wet, drain them and then cool well. Grate the cheese. Core the tomatoes and slice into 1/8 inch slices. Let drain.

Roll the dough out on a floured surface into a 12-inch circle. Brush off the excess flour. Sprinkle the dough wth half the grated cheese leaving a border of plain dough 1 1/2 inches wide. Next, spread out the onion mixture. Put a layer of whole basil leaves over the onions. Then arrange the tomatoes over the basil, laying them slightly overlapping. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the tomtoes and drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Fold over the edge of the dough and brush it with an egg wash (mix the egg with the milk). Bake in a 400F oven for 45 minutes or so, till the top is browned and the bottom is done. Serve warm with a green salad.

Serves: 8

Source: Sur La Table class with chef Kelsie Kerr

Prepared by: Lena for the July 2008 meeting and July 2013 meeting.