When I served this tart for dinner, my husband said he felt like he was eating a painting. One thing about summer -- it can sure give you a colorful meal!
This Yellow Tomato Tart is unlike any tart I have made before -- from the crust, to the tomato custard filling. I have wanted to bake this tart for two years (You should only bake this tart with in-season, garden tomatoes!) Last summer during my kitchen renovation, there were no tarts emerging from my oven. I missed an entire season of baking with stone fruit, berries, and tomatoes. This summer I have the ideal workspace, but it's been my tomatoes that have kept me from baking this tart -- up until this week. A cool, damp spring and an intensely hot summer were not kind to Minnesota tomatoes. I have had big, hard, green tomatoes hanging on the vines since early July; such disappointment! Finally today, I was able to harvest enough yellow tomatoes to make the custard for this tart. There is no dairy in this custard; gently cooked and puréed tomatoes blended with eggs make up the rich, velvety filling. If you don't feel like making a tart, fill individual ramekins with the custard and bake in a bain marie.
And how about making the tomato purée now and freezing it to enjoy during the dead of winter? Sounds good to me!
:: Yellow Tomato Tart
recipe from Happy In The Kitchen by Michel Richard
Use either a tart ring with 2-inch sides or cake pan with a removable bottom and 2-inch sides.
• Unsalted butter and flour for the ring or pan
• Pâte Brisée (recipe follows)
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 pounds yellow tomatoes (4 or 5 large), cored and cut into 2-inch chunks
• 5 large eggs
• Fine sea salt
• Tabasco sauce
• Assorted small heirloom tomatoes in different colors and shapes
• Assorted herbs and herb flowers, such as sliced chives, chive blossoms, and basil blossoms
• Fleur de sel
• Extra-virgin olive oil
1. If using a ring, line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Butter a 2-inch-high 7-inch ring and place it on the baking sheet. Or butter a 7- or 8-inch cake pan with a removable bottom (I used a springform pan) and place it on a baking sheet.
2. Lightly flour a work surface. Roll the pastry dough into a 12-to 12-1/2-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick, flouring the dough and work surface as necessary (I always roll my dough between sheets of lightly-floured wax paper and plastic wrap). Brush off any excess flour. Transfer the dough to the tart ring or pan. Gently lift the edges to ease the dough into the corners of the ring or pan, then push down gently to fill the corners. Press the dough gently against the sides of the ring or pan to form an even layer, and trim the excess dough. Prick the dough all over with the tines of a fork, and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes.
3. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350˚F.
4. Line the pastry shell with a sheet of buttered aluminum foil and fill with dried rice or beans. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes to set the dough. Remove the foil and weights, and continue to bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through. Remove the pan from the oven and cool completely on a cooling rack. Reduce the oven temperature to 325˚F.
5. Place the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the yellow tomatoes and stir until they begin to release their juices. Lower the heat as necessary to prevent the tomatoes from browning, and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until they have softened and the juices are slightly reduced.
6. Transfer the tomatoes to a blender and purée until smooth. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing on the solids to release all of the liquid; discard the solids. There should be about 2 cups of purée.
7. Break the eggs into the blender. Add the puréed tomatoes and blend thoroughly. Season with salt and Tabasco to taste, and pulse to blend in the seasonings.
8. Pour the filling into the shell and bake for about 45 minutes, or until set. To check, jiggle the pan slightly; there should not be any sections that appear liquid. Remove from the oven and place on a rack to cool briefly. When cool enough to handle, remove the ring or remove from the pan. Cool tart completely before serving.
9. To serve, brush the tart lightly with olive oil and garnish with tomatoes, herbs, and flowers.
FOR INDIVIDUAL CUSTARDS: Preheat over to 325˚F. Place four 6-ounce ramekins in a high-sided baking pan and divide the custard between them. Fill the pan with very hot water to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes, until set. Serve at room temperature.
• 1 2/3 cups pastry flour
• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 2 tablespoons water
• 1 large egg
• 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
• 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine a generous 1/2 cup of the flour, the butter, water, egg, salt, and sugar. Blend until thoroughly combined and smooth. Add the remaining flour and pulse until the dough just starts to come together.
2. Pour out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten into a disk about 1-inch thick. Wrap in the plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour, or up to 3 days.
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