Tomato Tarte Tatin

I love garden fresh tomatoes. That hit of warmth and sweetness when I bite into them fresh from the vine. Every year I plant 20 different varieties, mostly heirloom and in a mix of colors, shapes, sized and textures. Some of the seeds I plant are from tomatoes I brought back from Italy and every time I see them, I am reminded of the time I spent there.

When I’m not just eating them fresh from the vine (we have so many I sometimes just eat them like candy), I make a simple salad by adding a soft mozzarella, basil from the pot in front of the house, crunchy salt, freshly ground pepper, and a drizzle of great quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar. This year I must have had this as my dinner up to three times a week.

But now that the heat has broken and after 2 months of dry weather the rain has finally arrived, I crave something warm. We still have plenty of tomatoes and since roasting them brings the sweetness out even more, I thought a savory tart would be a nice change. The ingredients aren’t much different from the insalata caprese I was eating all summer.

This tarte tatin is fairly straightforward but for those who are a bit wary of flipping a hot skillet, I’ve added an alternative. While the finished product may not be beautiful, it makes up for it by being absolutely delicious. In fact, the alternative may actually be the prettier version!

Tomato Tarte Tatin

  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 300 g mixed cherry tomatoes, larger ones halved
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 60 g Gouda
  • 2 sprigs basil, leaves plucked
  • 1 package pre-rolled puff pastry

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Heat the olive oil in a ovenproof skillet. When the oil is hot, add the onions and sauté until lightly caramelized. Add the tomatoes and garlic and cook, stirring every now and then, until the tomatoes begin to pop, about 4-5 min. Add the vinegar and cook 2 min more. Stir in the basil leaves and cheese. Place the puff pastry over the tomatoes and tuck in around the skillet. Bake for 30 min, until golden.

Remove the tart and let it rest for 5 min. Gently loosen the edges of the tart with a spoon or spatula. Place a plate over the skillet and flip. It’s ok if some of the tomatoes stick to the  pan. Carefully remove them and place on the tart.

Serve with a green salad.

Alternative: Place the puff pastry on a parchment lined baking sheet and spoon the tomato mixture onto the pastry. Fold either into a package, covering the tomatoes or fold the edges of the pastry over, taking care not to completely cover the tomatoes.

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