There are a few tomato tarts recipe out there but this one is the authentic recipe from the Provence region. Cooking it brings me back to my grand-mother’s kitchen and luckily I got to make it when we visited her last month.
My grand-parents lived in Antibes, in the south of France, for more than 20 years and kept a vegetable garden where tomatoes grew in abundance, along with cucumbers, eggplants, zucchinis and regional herbs like basil, rosemary and thyme. You never knew who was going to stay over for dinner “à la bonne franquette”, meaning a simple dinner for friends or family who were initially invited for lunch but ended up staying for dinner. That was often the case at my grand-mother’s house and she was always ready to make last-minute meals, thanks to having fresh vegetables and fruits in her backyard.
The tomato tart is one of her well-known dish that she simply served with a green salad, shallots and tarragon dressing. I have to point out that she would make the dough in advance, store it in the fridge and refresh it with flour right before using it.
- 1 ready-made Pillsbury dough sheet
- 2 or 3 tomatoes (depending on size)
- 2 tablespoons mustard
- 6 slices of swiss cheese
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Set oven at 400ºF. Cover shell of an 11 inches quiche pan with parchment paper, then roll-out dough and prick bottom with a fork. Spread mustard at bottom of the shell. Lay all six slices of swiss cheese on top of mustard in a circle. My grand-mother laminates each slice but I think it’s easier to just put the slices as is. They will overlap but that’s okay. Cut tomatoes in thin slices and layer on top of the cheese. They can overlap too. In a bowl, mix the tomato paste with olive oil and shallots until all is blended nicely. Spread mix on top of tomatoes and bake for 40 minutes. Do not over bake as shallots can burn quickly, as you can see in the photo below. I personally love that burned taste but not everyone does!
The secret ingredient to the recipe is the mustard. Serve tart with a chilled rosé from Provence, bien-sûr!
Close your eyes as you’re eating this delicious dish and picture yourself in the South of France….Très bon, n’est-ce-pas?