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A Fictional Tomato Tart
This tart’s presence in Google searches is due to the irrepressible Deb Perlman of Smitten Kitchen fame. I will be forever grateful to the La Cuisine customer who long ago introduced me to her website and cookbooks. Tarte Mathilde is apparently a fabricated recipe from a fictional character in The Margot Affair written by Sanaë Lemoine. I use the all butter crust from Cathy Barrow’s pie cookbooks. I have made lots of recipes for pie crust with at best an indifferent score, but this is the crust that was waiting patiently for me to discover it. I now make it in lots of four disks, just so there is no crust crisis whenever real or fictional recipes arise. This tart makes a lovely and tasty change for the end of season crush of heirloom tomatoes.
- 3 large very ripe tomatoes, heirloom or other, sliced crosswise 1/4-inch thick...
- 1 small garlic clove
- 1 cup (15 grams) basil leaves, loosely packed
- 2 cups (25 grams) parsley leaves, loosely packed
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil, plus more for brushing
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) smooth Dijon mustard - I use Fallot
- 2 ounces (55 grams) hard cheese, thinly sliced or coarsely grated
- Coarse or kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Have on hand your favorite tart crust - prebaked
- Roll out and bake blind your tart crust in a 10 inch (23cm) tart pan with a removable bottom.
- Place tomato slices on a rimmed baking sheet and lightly sprinkle with salt.
- Combine garlic, parsley, basil, and ½ teaspoon salt in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
- Add olive oil and pulse until a spreadable paste forms. - you do not want it to be too "liquidy"
- You might need to scrape down the sides of the food processor a few times.
- If making the herb mixture in advance, store in the refrigerator with plastic wrap pressed against its surface.
- Blot tomatoes with paper towels to remove excess liquid.
- Using a small spoon or offset spatula, spread Dijon mustard evenly on the bottom of the crust. Evenly distribute cheese on top of the mustard layer.
- Dollop with herb mixture and gently spread to cover in a thin layer.
- Top with tomatoes, overlapping.and you may have to cut smaller pieces if there are gaps.
- The tomatoes shrink while roasting, so keep them snug and flush with the edge of the crust.. Lightly brush tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with freshly ground pepper.
- Bake tart until tomatoes are softened and deeply roasted and the crust is golden, about 50 minutes and up to 1 hour,
- Allow to cool slightly then serve warm or at room temperature.
- Leftovers of the finished tart keep in the fridge covered with cling for three days.
After owning one of the best cooking stores in the US for 47 years, Nancy Pollard writes a blog about food in all its aspects – recipes, film, books, travel, superior sources and food related issues.