Tomato Tart

, from Issue #19. September, 2015
Photography by Nick Tresidder.
Tomato Tart

Serves: 4-6


225 grams plain flour
170 grams butter, diced and chilled
pinch of salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
1 egg yolk
3 tablespoons iced water

8 medium-sized vine tomatoes
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
knob of butter
1 red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
250 grams button mushrooms, diced
2 handfuls of baby spinach
¼ cup fresh white breadcrumbs
6 eggs
300 ml crème fraîche
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan


Pastry: Place the flour, butter, salt, pepper and rosemary in a food processor and process until the mixture forms fine crumbs. Combine the egg yolk and water and add to the flour. Process until the dough just starts to come together. Tip onto the bench and form into a disc. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll out on a lightly floured bench and line a 24 cm x 3 or 4 cm deep flan ring or loose-based tart tin. Refrigerate until firm.

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Bake the tart blind for 20 minutes, remove the baking beans and paper and bake for a further 5 minutes. Cool.

Tomatoes: Lower the tomatoes into a saucepan of boiling water for 10 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl of iced water. Peel off the skin and cut off the top to make a lid. Use a teaspoon or melon baller to scrape out the seeds, taking care not to split the tomato shell. Sprinkle the insides with a pinch of salt and invert onto paper towels to drain for one hour.

Heat the oil and butter in a sauté pan and cook the onion and garlic until tender. Add the mushrooms and cook until soft and any moisture has evaporated. Stir in the spinach to wilt, then the breadcrumbs and season generously.

Carefully pat the tomatoes dry, inside and out, with paper towels and spoon in the stuffing.

Beat the eggs and crème fraîche together and season well. Arrange the tomatoes in the tart and top with the lids. Brush the lids with a little olive oil and season. Pour the cream mixture around the tomatoes and scatter over the Parmesan.

Bake the tart for 15 minutes then reduce the temperature to 180°C and cook until the custard is just set.

Serve warm or at room temperature with a salad. 

Cook's Tip: To bake blind line a prepared pastry case with baking paper and fill with pie weights or dried beans. The beans support the pastry as it cooks. Bake in a preheated 190°C - 200°C oven for up to 20 minutes before removing the paper and weights. The shell should now have taken form. Return to the oven for the time specified in the recipe.