Holiday, Provence and a tomato tart
It`s been three months I am back from my holiday. I spent almost a month between Tuscany and Provence and I returned home with some good memories and, as usual, with a lot of books and magazines regarding house and food. The working routine, though, was waiting for me and I barely managed to peruse my new acquisitions.
However, one of the magazines could tease me. A daring “Elle à table” spent all this time insisting on showing its cover illustrated with a colourful tomato tart. Yes, I was tempted to open the magazine and try the recipe several times although I have to confess I`ve always found myself in troubles with pastries for tarts. They either get to hard or too crumbled.
This week I faced this issue. I opened the magazine and after reading the recipe I decided to combine it with another one, which was taken from a book I particularly love: “Eggs” by Michel Roux.
And the pastry was surprisingly perfect. I must say several times that: this tomato tart that looks so innocent and even dull is incredibly superb. It is neither sweet nor salty and fits so well with a leaf salad and stronger kinds of cheese on the side.
When the tart was just baked, I took a glass of wine, brought my plate to the sofa and was there giving myself the memories of Provence’s colours and landscapes and flicking the magazines I hadn’t even opened… because tarts, sweet or salty ones, will always make me remember France and the wonderful French’s abilities of preparing so savoury and good things that satisfy us even if we eat just a little.
But back to the pastry: with the recipe I prepared I managed to make enough pastry for three small pies: the tomato one and two others, with berries and courgette which I intend to publish in this blog in the next coming days. Here the recipe goes!
Basic pastry for tarts (this recipe is a suggestion for tarts, mini tarts and quiches).
Ingredients(portion of 480g)
250g of flour
125g of slightly softened butter chopped in cubes
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tea spoon of sugar
6 tablespoons of cold milk
Pour a mount of flour on a work surface (preferably marble) and make a well in the middle. Add the butter, the egg, salt and sugar inside. Mix all these ingredients with your fingertips and slowly work with the flour.
Keep gathering the ingredients up to the point they are all well embodied and you find the pastry a little crumbled. Add cold milk and mix it with your fingertips. Squash it with your palm two or three times in order to get a smooth pastry. In a ball-shape, wrap it in a cling film and leave it aside from 1 to 2 hours in the fridge before using it.
250g of cherry tomatoes
1 tablespoon of fresh cream milk or sour cream
1 tablespoon of strong mustard
Sprigs of thyme
Butter (to grease the roast pan)
Pre-heat the oven in 180 degrees Celsius with butter in a small roasting pan for the pie. Stretch the pastry over a floured surface, place it in the roasting pan and make several little holes with a fork.
In a small bowl, mix the cream milk with the mustard and spread on the pastry. Slice the tomatoes, put them over the pastry and sprinkle freshly grated salt and pepper. Take it to the oven for 20 minutes and then remove it to add the cherry tomatoes and the thyme. Put it back in the oven for approximately 20 minutes.