summer tomato tart
Presenting: the very best way to use up all those fresh, late-summer tomatoes! This savory summer tomato tart combines all the goodness of the season’s produce into one irresistible appetizer or light lunch/dinner. Made with a homemade pâte brisée, grated cheese, fresh herb pesto and loads of ripe, juicy tomatoes, you’ll want to put this one on repeat from now until the end of the season (and beyond).
Summer Tomato Tart Recipe
Ex-squeeze me, but how did we get to the end of August already? I’m not ready. School starts here in a couple of weeks and while I very much love gathering up school supplies and the idea of having six hours kid-free in my home five days a week for the first time ever (!), I’m also already mourning the thought that these magical Minnesota summer days are waning. So I’m going to hold onto them as tightly as I can and eat this summer tomato tart while I’m at it. Who’s with me?!
We have one measly tomato plant to call our backyard “garden” this year (lol), and while it has produced tons of tomatoes already, it has me dreaming of a future garden where I have so many tomatoes, I need to make this savory tart on repeat. Based on a recipe I found from Deb of Smitten Kitchen, this tart features a homemade pie crust topped with loads of salty cheese, a homemade herb pesto and, of course, a plethora of ripe, juicy tomatoes. It’ll make you feel like a fancy chef but none of it is particularly difficult to make — and the results are so, so good.
Best Ingredients for a Summer Tomato Tart
Since this tart recipe really leans into seasonal produce, you want to make sure you’re using the best of the best. That means if you’ve got a backyard garden to harvest from, GO FOR IT. Or, if you’re blessed with a local farmers market, grab some stuff directly from those hardworking farmers! But also, if Target is the place where you get produce, that works mighty fine, too. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Flour, sugar, salt, butter, egg and water, for the pâte brisée
- 1 to 1 1/2 lbs tomatoes: I used a mix of cherry and grape tomatoes for this recipe, but really, any tomato will do. Choose the freshest ones you can find with tight skins and that ripe tomato scent.
- Parsley and basil: Again, go for the good stuff if you can! We’re talking bright, perky green leaves.
- Stone-ground mustard: My favorite brand to use is Inglehoffer, but any stone-ground mustard variety will work here. The mustard layer seems like an odd choice, but trust me, it makes this dish.
- Asiago cheese: I highly recommend grating your own cheese off the block for this recipe, rather than using pre-shredded/grated cheese (which often includes some sort of anti-caking agent that adds an unpleasant gumminess to recipes). If you don’t like Asiago, any other hard cheese will work (see Recipe Notes).
How to Make a Pâte Brisée (a.k.a. All-Butter Pie Dough)
Based on Deb’s recommendation, I followed her recipe for pâte brisée, which is actually adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s pâte brisée, so you know we’re in good hands here. A pâte brisée is the French term for an all-butter pastry or pie dough that is often used in both sweet and savory tarts, pies, etc. It’s incredibly versatile and oh-so-easy to make, and it’s the perfect base for this tomato-y tart. Here’s how you make it:
- Pulse flour, sugar, salt and cold cubed butter in a food processor until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add egg and water; continue pulsing until the mixture gathers together and forms a soft dough.
- Roll out the dough between two sheets of parchment paper into a large disk. If the dough feels really soft, freeze it for a few minutes or until it’s pliable but doesn’t break when bent.
- Ease and press the dough into the bottom and sides of your tart pan.
- Pre-bake as directed.
Can I Make This Recipe in Advance?
You certainly can! Here’s what you can prep in advance, if you’re looking to save time or make this ahead of time:
- Prep the herb pesto mixture up to 24 hours in advance. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge, with a layer of plastic wrap pressed against the surface to keep it fresh.
- Make the dough a few days in advance. Keep it tightly covered with plastic wrap in the fridge until you’re ready to bake.
- You can also bake the crust up to 24 hours ahead of time, and bake the filling the next day. Leave the pre-baked crust uncovered at room temperature and it will stay fresh.
The best way to celebrate the near-end of summer is to enjoy all that it has to offer, and that includes the food. This tomato tart certainly makes the most of it.Print
This delicious tomato tart recipe is perfect for using up that late-summer produce! Layer stone-ground mustard, shredded cheese, homemade pesto and loads of fresh tomatoes on top of this easy-to-assemble tart for a yummy appetizer or light meal.
For the crust:
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1 large egg
- 1 tablespoon water
For the filling:
- 1 to 1 1/2 lbs cherry or grape tomatoes, halved*
- Salt, for seasoning and topping
- 2 cups loosely packed fresh parsley leaves
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
- 2 tablespoons stone-ground mustard
- 2 ounces Asiago cheese, grated**
- Freshly ground black pepper, for topping
- First, make the crust: Preheat your oven to 375°F. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse flour, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg and water; pulse to incorporate, then continue processing just until dough comes together. Transfer dough to a large sheet of parchment paper; shape into a disk. Place another sheet of parchment paper on top; use a rolling pin to roll out dough to an 11-inch circle. If dough feels too soft, place on a baking sheet and freeze for 5 to 10 minutes; if not, proceed to Step 2.
- Gently ease and press dough into the bottom and sides of a 9- to 9.5-inch round tart pan with a removable bottom. Trim off excess dough from the sides (reserve in the fridge for fixing any cracks during baking). Prick bottom several times with a fork. Freeze for 20 minutes until solid.
- Place tart pan on a baking sheet. Line with parchment paper, then add pie weights or dry beans to weigh down the parchment. Bake crust 20 minutes, then remove pie weights and parchment. Use leftover dough to fix any cracks, if needed. Bake 5 to 7 minutes more or until crust is just baked through. Set aside to cool.
- Next, make the filling: Arrange halved tomatoes, cut side-up, on a baking sheet. Sprinkle lightly with salt.
- In the bowl of a food processor, pulse parsley, basil, garlic and 1/2 teaspoon salt until finely chopped. Add olive oil; pulse, scraping down sides of bowl often, until mixture forms a smooth paste.
- Finally, assemble the tart: Use an offset spatula or small spoon to spread mustard into bottom of tart in a thin layer. Top evenly with cheese. Use a spoon to dollop parsley mixture on top of cheese, then gently spread over top of cheese as best as you can (it doesn’t need to be perfect). Use a paper towel to blot tomatoes to remove excess liquid. Top tart with tomatoes, tucking and overlapping as needed to completely fill tart pan (depending on the size of your tart pan and tomatoes, you might not fit them all in, but make sure it’s pretty crowded in there because the tomatoes will shrink during baking). Gently brush tomatoes with olive oil, then sprinkle with pepper.
- Bake tart (on a baking sheet) for 45 to 55 minutes or until tomatoes are very well-roasted and crust is golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Sprinkle with coarse salt and/or chopped herbs, if desired. Serve at room temperature.
- Store leftovers tightly wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- *You can also use regular tomatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices, for this recipe.
- **You can also use another hard cheese, such as cheddar, Parmesan, gruyere, etc.
- Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen.
Keywords: tomato pie, pate brisee, tart crust, savory tart, parsley pesto