Sunday, May 15, 2011

Tomato and Onion Tart

Sometimes when you're grocery shopping and see something as glorious as these tomatoes--you just have to stop, take a moment to drink in their magnificence and then stick them in your cart. Even if you have no idea what you're going to do with them when you get home. So I did. Then I looked for a recipe that would do them justice. One that would show off their gorgeous color. 

This tart is really delicious (and at room temperature too, which is nice). But honestly, now that I see the photos, I wish I could just flick those olives right off of there. They taste fantastic, don't get me wrong. I just don't think they look so great scattered like that. Next time I would arrange them differently, in a nice pattern, so they don't look like my tart got caught in an olive storm. Oh well (on my list of regrets in life, it's pretty far down).

Makes 6-8 servings

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
6 to 7 tablespoons ice water

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large onions (about 1 1/2 lb.), thinly sliced
salt to taste
1/2 lb. Gruyère or Jack cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
1/2 lb. plum tomatoes, cut in 1/2-inch slices or wedges
1/2 lb. yellow tomatoes, cut in 1/2-inch slices or wedges (or increase plum tomatoes to 1 lb.)
1/4 cup Niçoise olives, pitted

In a large bowl whisk together flour and salt and with a pastry blender or fingertips blend in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with a fork to incorporate, until mixture begins to form a dough. On a work surface smear dough in 3 or 4 forward motions with heel of hand to slightly develop gluten in flour and make dough easier to work with. Form dough into a ball and flatten to form a disk. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill at least 1 hour (and up to 1 week).

1.      In a large heavy skillet, heat the oil over moderate heat. Cook the onions with a pinch or two of salt, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 20-30 minutes. Remove skillet from heat to cool onions slightly.
2.      Preheat oven to 375°F.
3.      On a lightly floured surface with a floured rolling pin roll dough into a 14-inch round (about 1/8 inch thick). Fold round in half and transfer to a 12-inch tart pan with a removable fluted rim or a 12-inch quiche dish. Unfold dough, easing to fit, and trim overhang to 3/4 inch. Fold overhang toward center and press against side of pan or dish.
4.      Spread onion mixture over dough and top with cheese. Arrange tomato wedges and olives in concentric circles over cheese and season with salt and pepper.
5.      Bake tart in middle of oven 1 hour, or until pastry is golden, and cool on a rack. Remove rim of pan if necessary.
6.      Serve tart warm or at room temperature.

from Gourmet Magazine, May 1995

You can see I decided to use my cuisinart to make the
dough (it works great, just be careful not to overmix it).
butter added
dough disk already chilled/rested and ready to roll
rolled dough
dough in tart pan
onions before
caramelized onions (be patient, sometimes it takes more like 40 minutes)
After I sliced the tomatoes, I laid them down on paper
towels to help remove some of the excess liquid.
tart shell with onions
cheese sprinkled over the onions
tomatoes and olives arranged on top (see what I mean)


Judie Cleland said...

One of my summertime favorites; your recipe is a little different from mine. Your seems much better as mine is full of mayonnaise! Can't wait to try this.

Randi said...

Just back from Paris and was thinking about making quiche or clafoutis to have for dinner this week. But will try this instead. Of course, mine will not be as beautiful! (Remember the rugalah.)

Anonymous said...


Susan said...

Welcome back Randi! I know your tart will be beautiful. It's not like individually rolling the rugelach...arranging the tomato slices is the quick part. Just plan out your olives better than I did!

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