Savor the Tart!

Well, it was to be expected after all... Sometime during this season, the tomatoes makes themselves felt on blogs around this part of the world. 

And, while I was being obsessed with peaches and filled the last few posts here with them, I was still slowly building my tomato strength! Somehow the best of the the savory and sweet collided this season at the same time. The market stands were spilling over with plump and ripe tomatoes reminiscent of an indulgent grandma while at the same time playing kitten with the svelte lushness of ripe and firm peaches.

One would imagine this would be a collision of worlds and yet it was not. They seem to be rather harmonious and every Sunday brought me the vision of a proud mama looking on with fondness at the sexy headstrong and stunning daughter smiling at the memories it brought of her own youth. And, so their, individual aromas rose together in strength, enticing, welcoming, luring, enveloping, until I was lost, and, surrendered to them, filled my bags with many of each and walked home in an elated sense of accomplishment.!

Every week for the last few has been a repetition of the same. I yield with little resistance. If you read this post, you know my weakness for the red 'fruit'. If you haven't read the post then I highly recommend it, if only to laugh at my fall from the self-elevated pedestal of seasonal and local. I am only one perfectly ripe tomato away from cheating on my principles, clearly...!! {Does this make me a very cheap date or a very tiring one?}

Anyway, the reason I am drawn back is simply because I have not once wasted any of that produce! What does not get eaten as is, is baked, preserved, sauced and compotéd. Every morning begins with a generous dollop of peach and cardamom preserve and most every day has some tomato in it!

But, whatever I may make of them, there is no way, I can let the season pass without making one of the simplest and humblest dishes to appreciate this bounty. A Tart!

Tarts as I have waxed eloquent many a time here are one of my favorite things to make. And, when the mind needs a bit of a break, there is nothing that gives me the peace and space as kneading a dough. Even more, when I have to think about the flours I am using and how to get them to work the way I want them to. I can lose myself in this entirely and find myself anew at the end of it, relishing in the success of each tart as a reflection of my self-confidence; an exercise in drawing strength from within...

Yet, another reason, I think cooking is a necessary life skill. There is simply no other achievement that can be as pervasive, efficient, replicable and negative theta as the joy of cooking a wonderful meal. Not a perfect one, simply a delightful one that makes people smile and most of all, you!

Ooopss! I suppose I kind of, sort of, poured my heart to you. I know you didn't ask for it. Well, if you were wondering why I was meandering about, well, it has been that sort of few weeks. Thank you for listening! Even if you read only a bit of this long and windy post, I thank you. 

Now, I'll quietly segue into the recipe, shall I. May I present, the solace of mine soul - Tomato Tart! Pure and simple. 

It does have a gluten free crust and before you gluten snobs wrinkle your nose about it, I ask you to give it a chance. The millet and moong flours have just the right boldness to man up to the saucy fullness of the tomato. It is almost a needed intervention, lest you get ungrounded by the fatal attractiveness of the sun kissed slices.. Trust me, I speak from experience...!


Tomato Tart

with Millet + Whole Mung Crust

For the crust:

1/2 cup red millet flour

1/2 cup whole mung bean flour

1 T potato starch

1 tsp baking soda

5 T butter, room temperature

1 egg

2 T buttermilk

2 tsp, thyme leaves

sea salt for taste

For the filling:

4 eggs

1/4 cup yogurt

3 T fresh pesto

assortment of ripe tomato slices ( I used beef steak, yellow, and cherry tomatoes)

Basil leaves to garnish

To make the crust, in a bowl, sift together the flours, salt, baking soda and potato starch.

Add the butter and rub into the flours until a crumbly mixture is formed.

Make a well in the center and crack the egg into it. Whisk the egg lightly. Add the buttermilk and thyme in.

Bring the ingredients into a dough ball gently kneading them together.

Set aside for a few minutes.

Grease an 8 inch tart pan and press the dough into the bottom and up the sides as evenly as possible. Refrigerate the crust while you prepare the filling or upto 20 minutes.

Pre heat the oven to 375F.

Whisk together the eggs and then add the yogurt to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread the pesto into  base of  cooled crust.

Pour the custard filling over and then layer the tomato slices on top as you wish.

Bake for 30 minutes until crust is golden and custard is set.

Let cool for a few minutes, garnish with basil and cheese. Serve warm or cold!