When I say fool proof, I mean it. I baked this tomato tart for a baby shower I attended yesterday and I managed to forget to put the heat gage on when I put the pastry in, leaving it blowing lukewarm air onto my pastry for 20 minutes, then as I was running late I had to use grill instead of convection and I almost burned the retched tart. Now that said I never even got to taste it as it was flattened within 7 minutes of reaching the party and everyone said it was delicious. So if that isn’t testimony to its fool proofness, then I don’t know what is.
The open tart principle is so easy, just roll your defrosted store bought puff pastry onto a baking tray and bake it in a pre heated oven (220C˚) for about 20 minutes or until golden and crispy. Then pop on whatever you want and bake it until the topping is ready, slice up and eat. So simple.
The tart I did yesterday is particularly delicious, I topped my pre baked pastry with little piles of grated mozzarella, topped with a thick slice of tomato and a good dollop of basil pesto and baked this until the cheese melted and had golden brown bubbles on it.
I garnished mine with fresh basil leaves but the heat can colour the basil brown, so one should only garnish it just before serving.
You can also vary the toppings. I have done tarts where I topped my pastry with grilled butternut and feta, and also with caramelised onions, bacon and blue cheese. My easy chicken pie post is also based on the same principle.
It’s a great finger food or starter but also a lovely quick family meal if served with a salad.
Open tomato tart
Makes 15 slices
1 roll of puff pastry, defrosted
250g of mozzarella loaf, grated (or mozzarella balls sliced)
15 thick slices of ripe tomatoes
100ml of basil pesto home-made or bought (My favourite bought pesto is Pesto Princess – seriously good stuff)
Fresh basil leaves for garnish
Pre heat your oven to 220C˚ and place the wire rack in the middle of the oven. Roll out of your pastry on a greased baking tray and bake for 20 minutes or until golden and crispy.
Remove from the oven and place little piles of grated mozzarella evenly spaced, three rows width wise and five rows length wise. Top each pile with a slice of tomato and spoon a heaped teaspoon of pesto on top of each slice.
Return to the oven and bake until the cheese starts melting. Allow it to cool for a few minutes, then slice it up like the photo shows it.
Garnish with fresh basil just before serving. Best served warm.