Well folks, August is half gone and summer is almost finished…so time to make this Roasted Tomato Tart with Thyme Shortbread! It’s exactly the type of dish that’s perfect for a lazy, late summer day. It also makes beautiful use of the bounty of tomatoes in the markets and gardens this time of year.
Given the abundance of tomatoes that we would normally have this time of year, we’ve been sorely lacking in tomatoey goodness this summer. Last winter, we lost Dad’s greenhouse during a particularly bad windstorm. Alas, the only thing to survive was the mint. That stuff is impossible to kill (Mint lemonade anybody? That reminds me, we need a mojito recipe…) I love a roasted tomato tart, and I’ve always made at least one per summer. Luckily, there’s still an abundance of ripe, juicy tomatoes close to us in the markets and stores, so we made sure to get our tomato fix.
The classic herb pairing for anything tomato is usually basil, but did you know that thyme works beautifully as well? The earthy flavour really holds up well with the concentrated flavour that comes from roasting. We decided on a thyme-infused shortbread crust with 50% spelt flour, 50% all purpose flour. The spelt adds a nuttiness to the crust and makes you feel a little better about eating a shortbread crust for supper! The shortbread also holds up well to the moisture of the tomatoes, especially when blind-baked beforehand.
We also chose a bit of a curveball with the cheese – Red Leicester. If you’ve never tried it before, it’s a British cheese and it’s friggin delicious. Similar to cheddar, but slightly nuttier, it has the backbone needed to stand up to the thyme and tomato, but not compete either. That being said, it’s also tasty with a good quality aged cheddar or gruyere!
To make the tart
We made the shortbread crust in our food processor and it took mere seconds. Then the dough chills for a bit before you roll it out and top it with the cheese and sliced tomatoes. This dish is seriously easy. Basically, this roasted tomato tart is like a homemade pizza, except it looks fancier and it’s less work. And who doesn’t want less work on a hot summer day? Please share your comments with us, either below or on our Facebook or Instagram pages! 🙂
Roasted Tomato Tart with Thyme Shortbread
A delicious, savoury tart to use up your summer tomatoes
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup spelt flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1/2 tbsp thyme leaves, roughly chopped
- 2-3 tbsp ice water
- 1 cup red leicester cheese, shredded
- 3-4 tomatoes, sliced thin and patted with a paper towel to absorb some of the liquid
- salt & pepper
- honey to drizzle & extra thyme, if desired
Combine the flours and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly and pea-sized. Add the ice water and thyme, and run until the dough comes together into a ball, roughly 30 seconds. Form the ball into a slightly flat disc shape, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400F. On a well floured surface, roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about 1/8 inch thick, turning the dough 1/4 after every couple of rolls and flouring underneath as you go, to prevent sticking. Carefully roll the dough onto the rolling pin, and transfer to either a standard 9.5 inch tart pan, or a 35x11cm long pan. Return the crust to the freezer for 10 minutes, then prick with a fork and blind bake (bake empty) for 10 minutes. Let cool slightly.
Reduce oven temperature to 375F. Layer the bottom of the tart with cheese, then layer the tomatoes over top, being sure to overlap. Season the top with salt and pepper, and bake for 30-40 minutes or until tomatoes are cooked and beginning to brown. Let cool 5-10 minutes before removing from the pan. Serve warm or cold, with a drizzle of honey and additional thyme if desired.