- 3 ripe tomatoes, (Ideally a variety of colors and sizes to create an ombre effect)
- 1/ 2 cup fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1 egg
- 4 heaping tablespoon basil pesto
- small handful of pine nuts
- black pepper, to taste
- 1 sheet of puff pastry dough
Preheat your oven to 400°F.
Remove the puff pastry from the fridge and keeping it on its parchment wrap, unroll and lay it onto a large baking tray.
With a sharp knife, score an even 1/2 in. border around the pastry, and then using a fork prick the central area within the border evenly. This will help the center to not rise so much.
This is optional, but for a decorative edge, using your thumb and forefinger, pinch the border to create an inviting crimped edge evenly all around the pastry. Be confident with this to ensure the crimps don’t loosen as the pastry bakes.
Crack the egg into a small bowl and beat well. Then with a pastry brush (or a clean finger if you don’t have one!) brush a layer of the beaten egg onto the border of the pastry.
Bake pastry in the oven for 10 mins.
After the 10 mins, remove from the oven and set aside to cool. The center will naturally have risen a little, so carefully push it back down to give you a flat surface for the toppings.
As the pastry cools, prep your ingredients. Start with the tomatoes, slicing them all equally to approx. 1/4 in. thick round slices. Try to not to slice too thin or thick to allow them to layer easily and cook evenly. Set aside onto some kitchen towel to soak up some of the excess liquid. Liquid is not the friend of crisp pastry!
Drain the ball of mozzarella from the brine in comes in and pat dry with a towel or kitchen paper to dry off any excess liquid – again to prevent the bottom of the pastry from crisping! Set aside.
Spoon the basil pesto onto the centre of the pastry and spread evenly across the tart getting into the corners. Arrange the tomato slices over the pesto in your desired pattern overlapping them to get a full and generous finish. If you opt to create the ombre effect, start in one corner with the greenest tomatoes and layer diagonally from yellow, orange, red and then to dark red in the opposite corner. Season the tomatoes with some freshly cracked black pepper.
Rustically tear small chunks of the mozzarella and arrange them all around the tomatoes. Scatter over the pine nuts to add some extra crunch to the final dish.
Add another wash of the beaten egg to the edge of the tart to give a beautiful crisp and golden crust, return the tart to the oven and bake for 25-30 mins until the tomatoes are roasted, the mozzarella melted and lightly browned and the pastry crisp.
Let cool for a few minutes before slicing into generous slices and enjoy alongside a simple salad.