Tomato & Goat Cheese Tart

August 1, 2014

THIS WEEK, feeling inspired by cookbook authors Kate Hill and David Lebovitz, I made a French tomato tart.  What poetry! The tender, flaky, Pâte Brisée shell is brushed with winey Dijon mustard, and topped with tomatoes, fragrant herbs, and rounds of tangy goat cheese.

Note: Pâte Brisée (French pastry dough) is extremely easy to make (and first 9 photos below will prove this to you). But if you are in an absolute rush, go ahead and use store-bought pastry dough.

To make Pâte Brisée, simply tip 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour into the work bowl of your food processor.

Then add a big pinch (1/2 teaspoon) salt …

And 1 diced-up stick of cold, unsalted butter.

Pulse the machine 10 times just to break up the butter.

Beat 1 large egg with 2 tablespoons cold water, and add them to the flour mixture. Process for 3-5 seconds, or until the dough resembles coarse crumbs. Don’t overmix!

If the crumbs hold together when pressed between your fingers, you’re good to go. Otherwise, you’ll need to pulse in another tablespoon of water.

Gracefully pour the crumbly mass onto your work station. Then roughly form the dough into a ball, brutally flatten it into a disk, and lovingly wrap it in plastic.

I’m practicing my adverbs today.

Set the dough beside a quart of heavy cream in the fridge, and let it chill for at least 30 minutes (or up to 2 days).

Roll the pastry into a 12-inch diameter circle…

Fold the circle twice to form a triangle, and place its point in the center of a 9-inch diameter, removable-bottom tart pan.

Note: You needn’t grease the pan. Pâte Brisée contains enough butter to keep it from sticking.

Unfold the pastry, and gently work it into the pan.

Fold the overhang inward, and press it, with your thumb, against the fluted edge.

Then “dock” the bottom (not the sides!) of the dough with the tines of a fork. The little holes will keep the tart from puffing as it bakes.

Freeze the dough for 10 minutes.

Put a heaping tablespoon of Dijon mustard in the center of the tart…

And spread it out with a red pastry brush.

Lick the red pastry brush.

Then slice up 2 or 3 large tomatoes (I used only 2; these came from my local farmers market, because my own “love apples” are not quite ripe yet)…

And layer them in the tart.

Sprinkle the slices with salt, pepper, and fresh, coarsely-chopped herbs. I used chives and parsley from my Herb Garden, but you could use thyme, oregano, tarragon, or whatever you like or have on hand. Don’t be afraid to experiment.

Top the tomatoes with 1/2-inch-thick slices of goat cheese.

Sprinkle the cheese with more chopped parsley and chives, or whatever herbs you are using.

Bake at 425°F for 30 minutes, or until the crust is done, and the tomatoes are tender. To brown the cheese, I placed my tart under the broiler for a couple of minutes.

Let the tart rest on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes, and then unmold it. To unmold, just center the pan on a water glass, and let the outer ring crash to the floor.

Now grab some plates and some forks, and serve forth this great beauty!

Folks, you won’t believe the deliciousness of this tart. Brenda Johnson (my taste-tester) and I both swooned over the layers of flavors, which included the awesome kick of Dijon mustard.

And here, for your convenience, is a copy-and-paste version of the above:

Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart
Adapted, slightly, from A Culinary Journey in Gascony by Kate Hill (Ten Speed Press; 2004)
Ingredients for one 9-inch tart, or 6-8 servings
Pâte Brisée (French pastry dough) for a 9-inch tart pan, chilled (recipe here)
1 generous tablespoon Dijon mustard
2-3 large, ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
Salt and freshly-ground pepper
2 tablespoons fresh, coarsely-chopped herbs (such as parsley, chives, thyme, tarragon, and/or oregano)
8 oz (or more) goat cheese, cut into 1/2-inch slices

Special Equipment: A 9-inch diameter removable-bottom tart pan

Place the oven rack at the center position; preheat the oven to 425°F.

1. Roll the Pâte Brisée dough into a 12-inch diameter circle. Transfer the dough to the tart pan, and fold the overhang inward, pressing it against the fluted rim of the pan. Dock the bottom of the pastry with the tines of a fork. Chill the dough in the freezer for 10 minutes.

2. Use a pastry brush (or the back of a spoon) to spread the Dijon mustard over the bottom of the crust.

3. Layer the tomato slices in the tart pan, and season them with salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of the chopped herbs. Top the tomatoes with the sliced goat cheese and the remaining herbs.

4. Bake until the crust is done, and the tomatoes are tender — about 30 minutes. To brown the cheese, set the tart under the broiler for about 2 minutes.

Let the tart cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes, then unmold it.   Serve warm or at room temperature.

Think you’ll try this Lily the Beagle-approved tart? You can let me know by leaving a comment. As always, your words are the sunshine of my day.

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Related Posts:
Classic Tomato Pie
Chive Pesto
Zoodles and Yoodles with Garlic

Comments

  1. Kate says:

    And just as I was wondering what to take to a brunch next week, this heavenly vision appears! Thanks so much–I just wish I had a slice of yours for my lunch right now.

  2. Cheryl says:

    This looks absolutely delicious! It will be interesting to compare this recipe with your recipe for TOMATO PIE that I make every single week when the heirloom tomatoes are ready. Tomato Pie is truly my very favorite summer recipe! That one and of course your Blueberry Bars!

  3. Erin Brady says:

    My tomatoes aren’t ready just yet, but when they are, I’ll make this!

  4. Karin G says:

    I definitely want to make this next week when I can find some goat cheese. However lovingly, gracefully and artistically I want to remind you that you are cooking with the adverbs. And I do appreciate your specific directions. If I don’t have a red pastry brush, may a lick the one I have?

  5. Oh gorgeous, Kevin. I think I’ll try it with a potato slice crust so that’s gluten free as well as decadent!

  6. Cary Bradley says:

    Spectacular! Been working up courage to make this crust. Mustard sings here. Get cheese at farmer’s market today! :)

  7. Lisa F says:

    Looks beautiful and simple–a perfect summer meal. Thanks, Kevin.

  8. Brenda Johnson says:

    He’s not stretching the truth one bit dear readers- swoon we did!!!! The flavors are all so bright and bursting with summer goodness in this tart! From the zip of the mustard to the creamy tang of the goat cheese- they all play so well together! Certainly with the seasons bounty of tomatoes and herbs upon us…fresh supply isn’t a problem! This will solve many a summer nights “what’s for dinner?” dilemma!!! Thanks so much for sharing and swooning with me Kevin!!!

  9. Beth Thomerson says:

    Making this as an appetizer for dinner with friends tonight. Really looking forward to it, but because I’m pressed for time, I’m going with a frozen organic pie crust. I did score some beautiful heirloom tomatoes, and I might sprinkle some halved sun gold cherry tomatoes across the top, too. Can’t wait to see how this turns out. Thanks, Kevin!

  10. Joni D. says:

    This looks wonderful!! I’m having company on Tuesday – guess what I’m making??? Wish I had your beautiful plates!!!

  11. Linda says:

    I loved your first tomato pie and now I think I will make this lovely version. Thank you for your wonderful writing…it always gives me a little chuckle.

  12. Tressa says:

    I will be making one of these. Here’s a tart pan question. I have two tart pans that don’t have removable bottoms. All of the recipes using tart pans use pans with removable bottoms. What do I do with the two that I have? Are they for any certain kind of recipes? Please help!

  13. Hi Tressa – I’ve never encountered a tart pan that doesn’t have a removable bottom. So to answer your question…well, I’m stumped!

  14. Patricia Walmsley says:

    OOO Lovely, my tomatoes are well ready so will be trying your recipe this week. Very interesting where the recipe comes from as I live in Gascony. Just finished making courgette and tomato soup for the freezer so the tart is next up. Thank you.

  15. Sheila says:

    Hi Kevin- quick question about the pastry… I think I remember seeing the recipe before without egg. What difference does it make and which is better?

  16. Kate says:

    Wishing you greater and greater love, Kevin and Will! May Heaven bless you with great food, good friends and more and more love. Happy Anniversary!

    The tart looks wonderful! Can’t wait to taste test it myself. :)

    <3

  17. kathy passie says:

    Kevin…Another masterpiece! Can’t wait to try it…
    Tomorrow nite for supper! Thank you!

  18. Beverly, zone 6, eastern PA says:

    David Lebovitz is already famous in this house because of his Chocolate Orbit Cake recipe, a hugely decadent slab of mouth watering ecstasy. Thanks for mentioning him and reminding me it’s time to make one of those as well as your very timely Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart. Gorgeous!

    PS regarding Tressa’s one piece tart pans,,,, maybe they are for Quiches? I have a glass pan that matches tart pans, low, round and with the side fluting, but it is all one piece and meant for Quiche.

  19. Beverly – You are absolutely right. The one piece tart pans are intended for quiche!

  20. Susan says:

    Of all the blogs I follow, Kevin I just adore yours!!
    I wish we were neighbors, but I guess I’ll just settle with the relationship we have thru your blog.
    You are a zany, fun, writer and it always brightens my day when I see you in my inbox.
    Trying the tart today, thanks for the recipe with the adverbs!
    Susan

  21. Anne in Vermont Zone 4/5 says:

    Thanks Kevin. I am always looking for new ways to eat the luscious tomatoes Paul grows. So far we have only had a handful of cherry tomatoes and three large red ones, but soon . . . .

  22. Liz Klingler says:

    I made this last night. I didn’t have a tart pan, but used a 9″ pie pan and had no problem. The crust was unbelievably easy to put together (I didn’t use all of the dough and didn’t bring the crust up to the top of the pan). The completed pie was so good that we found ourselves stopping every once in awhile and saying “this is really good!” Will make it again, for sure.

  23. Hi Liz – So glad you enjoyed the tart. Nice to know that it worked out well for you in a regular 9-inch pie pan. And kudos to you for making the crust!

  24. I made the tart for a party yesterday. It was sooo good that people could not stop talking about it. The hostess had to save a sliver for me because it was devoured in mere minutes! Don’t skip the homemade crust, it is devine. I will be trying more of your recipes Kevin, and thanks!

  25. Trudi Dido says:

    Oh Yes I will be making this one too! My husband and I have loved every recipe from you. (well except the one for indian bread… that did not turn out so good…Oh well. ) Our tomatoes come from the farmer’s market since the blasted chipmunks got ours. Good luck with your garden !

  26. Claude Demers says:

    Nice recipe, but I failed the crust part – it just did not want to roll out. Finally had to keep adding a bit of water, and working by hand, finally got it in the pan with enough for a an edge. Wonder where I went wrong? I may have overprocessed after adding the egg/water mixture. Any comments appreciated.

  27. Cathy O says:

    Hi Kevin, I’ve made your tomato pie recipe with the biscuit crust and it was absolutely delicious! Now, I want to try this tart, but I am not very adventurous when it comes to cheeses. Could I use fresh mozzarella in place of the goat cheese?
    Also want to wish you and Will a happy anniversary – so glad that you have that special someone to share all your talents with.

  28. Meg says:

    I made this last night, but used fresh mozzarella instead of goat cheese, and it came out great. I’m not familiar with goat cheese, and it was more expensive, so I went with what I was used to. It was fantastic! I love it! After trying it with the mozzarella, I am thinking I will try the goat cheese next time, because it sounds like it will be even better. And by the way, for all of you not making the pate brisee, it was super easy to make, and was seriously one of the best parts of the recipe. You all are seriously missing out if you are not making it! It really only took at few more minutes, and I did not use a food processor for it, so I did it all by hand.

  29. Mau in SoCal says:

    What herbs did those of you who made this tart use?
    Any with basil?

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