I can’t get enough of tomatoes in the Summer, it’s the only time of the year I’ll even consider making myself a tomato sandwich or a tomato salad.
You see, I’m a recovering tomato hater. I’m not too sure what I disliked so much about them as a kid, probably the acidity and the jelly seeds. But now, it’s not the flavor or texture that puts me off, I just don’t think a flavorless and grainy tomato, grown out of season, is worth a prime spot on my table when so many other vegetables are at their best during the colder months. I’ve been disappointed too many times.
So, to avoid this, I take full advantage of my tomatoes when the earth has made them perfect, and that’s when they’ve had a full on make out session with the sun.
Step 1 to 4: Layering the tart
Tomato and Dijon mustard tart is a French summer classic, one that makes the fresh ingredients shine. It’s acidic, a bit hot and frankly addictive. There is not one summer that goes by without me making one.
I like to use cherry tomatoes on the vine for my single portion tart as there is no risk of them rolling away while I put the tart in the oven. And as long as you don’t over cook them, they will stay whole, keeping their sweet juices sealed, giving the pastry a chance to get crispy and flaky.
Once cooked and soft, the tomatoes just need a quick pinch to get free from the vine. It can get a bit messy, but it’s quite nice to play with your food when no ones looking, right.
- 1 frozen Puff Pastry sheet (1/3 of a roll, see how here)
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- A pinch Oregano
- 2 heaped tbsp Mozzarella
- 20 cherry tomatoes (more or less)
- a few shavings of Parmesan
- a drizzle Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- a few Basil leaves
- Turn the oven on to 200C/400F and bake the pre-cut, frozen puff pastry on a baking sheet, for 10 minutes. (if using a fresh pastry see tips below)
- Take the pastry out while leaving the oven on. Spread the Dijon mustard evenly within the crust limits and sprinkle with oregano.
- Add the mozzarella, also within the lines, and top with the cherry tomatoes.
- Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and add a few shaving of Parmesan.
- Return to the oven for another 15 minutes, until the pastry is golden and the tomatoes are blistered.
- If you are using fresh pastry, cut the sheet into three equal parts. Lightly run the tip of your knife around dough of each section, about 1 cm away from the edges, to create a crust. Be careful not to go all the way through.
- Use one sheet for this recipe, skipping the first 10 minutes of pre-cooking. Freeze the 2 leftover sheets, ready to be used the next time you fancy a tart. See freezing tips here
- If you can’t find cherry tomatoes on the vine, but want to avoid dancing tomatoes, I would favour grape tomatoes. Although haven’t tried it, I have the feeling their oval shape might minimize their movements.