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Easy Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart

January 21, 2012

A little bit of summer on this dreary February day… how about some bright red cherry tomatoes? :)

This tart from the ATK Family Baking Book makes a great first course for a larger meal, or it would work equally well alongside a soup as half of a light supper. Roasting the tomatoes enhances their sweetness, but the balsamic vinegar and earthy goat cheese keep the overall flavor on the savory side. Although it’s very easy to put together because it uses frozen puff pastry instead of a homemade dough, the tart still takes about an hour and a half from start to finish, so plan your time accordingly. I don’t really have anything else to say about the recipe… so enjoy! :)

Tomato and goat cheese tart

Makes two 9.5 by 4.5-inch tarts

Ingredients

  • 1  (9.5 by 9-inch) sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 2  large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2  cups (about 12 ounces) cherry tomatoes
  • 3  tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2  teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1  shallot, halved and sliced thin
  • 3  garlic cloves, peeled and sliced thin
  • 1/2  teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8  ounces goat cheese, softened (about 2 cups)
  • 1  tablespoon chopped fresh basil

Directions

  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat to 425 degrees F. Cut the pastry into two 9.5-by-4.5-inch rectangles and lay them on a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Brush lightly with some of the beaten egg and poke thoroughly with a fork. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and continue to bake until the pastry shells are golden brown and crisp, 10 to 15 minutes longer, rotating the baking pan halfway through baking. Let the pastry cool completely on the baking sheet, about 30 minutes. Leave the oven on.
  2. Toss the tomatoes with 1 tablespoon of the oil, vinegar, shallot, garlic, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spread the tomatoes into a 13-by-9-inch baking dish. Roast the tomatoes, without stirring, until the skins are slightly shriveled but the tomatoes have retained their shape, about 30 minutes. Set the tomatoes aside to cool.
  3. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees F. Mix the goat cheese with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil until smooth and season with salt and pepper to taste. Use the tip of a paring knife to cut a 1/2-inch border around the edge of the cooled puff pastry shells. Press the centers of the shells down to rest about 1/4-inch lower than the edges. Spread the goat cheese mixture evenly over the sunken centers of both shells, leaving the raised edges clean. Gently spoon the roasted tomatoes evenly over the cheese on each shell.
  4. Brush the edges and sides of each tart with more beaten egg. Bake the tarts until the pastry is a deep golden brown and the tomatoes are hot, 10 to 15 minutes. Let the tarts cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a serving platter and sprinkle with the basil. To serve, cut each tart crosswise into 3 pieces.

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