Tomato Tart

When October arrives, I pick the last of my tomatoes. My basil continues to produce nicely; the onions are ready to pull, and my garlic has just been harvested.  With all of these wonderful fresh ingredients, I made a couple of tomato tarts, one to have for dinner and the other to freeze and enjoy later on a cold, winter day.  This recipe is easy but a little time consuming; so, plan to spend about an hour making it. The tart makes a nice entrée for a brunch, a luncheon or a light dinner with a salad.

Ingredients: Serves 4 to 6

For tart:
8-inch pie shell (GF) partially cooked (recipe below)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
5 or 6 medium tomatoes, peeled, cored and seeded
½ cup chopped onion
3 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
½ teaspoon of salt
¼ teaspoon of pepper
Zest from ½ lemon
Juice from ½ lemon
1 extra large egg
2 extra large egg yolks (the egg whites freeze well for later use)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
3 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped
¼ cup of freshly ground Parmesan cheese
Sprig of basil for decoration


For crust:
2 cups of gluten-free flour*
1 teaspoon of xantham gum
1 teaspoon of salt
11 tablespoons of unsalted sweet cream butter (cut into 11 pieces)
5 tablespoons of cold water

*Flour Blend
1¼ cups sorghum flour
1¼ cups white rice flour
1 cup potato starch (not flour) 
1 cup sweet rice flour


Pre-heat the oven to 375°.

To easily peel the tomatoes, bring a pot of water to a boil and gently place the tomatoes in the water and wait two or three minutes. Once the skin starts to separate from the meat of the tomato, remove from them from the water and place them on a plate. When they’re cool enough to handle, peel, core, seed and coarsely chop the tomatoes. Place in a colander to let excess liquid drain. 

In a skillet, heat the olive oil and add the onions, garlic and tomatoes stirring occasionally. Season with the basil, salt, pepper, lemon zest and juice and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated. This may take 20 minutes.

In a medium bowl beat the egg, yolks, olive oil, parsley and cheese together and then stir into the tomato mixture. Once blended, pour the mixture into the pie shell and bake for 30 minutes. The tart will puff up and brown slightly. Decorate with fresh basil leaves.

Pie shells can be difficult to make, but this one seems to be easier than most. Maybe it’s because of the flour or maybe because of the amount of butter. Whatever the reason, it’s easy to handle and has a nice flavor and is very flakey.

In a mixing stand bowl with the paddle attachment mix the flour, xanthum gum, salt and butter together on a low speed. The flour will form into little pea shaped pieces. Once this happens add the cold water, one tablespoon at a time, and increase the speed to medium and beat until well blended. Cut the dough in half and shape to form two balls of dough.

Sprinkle some flour over the surface where you’re rolling out the piecrust and a little on the roller. Place the ball of dough onto the dusted surface and press down to shape a disc. Lightly roll the dough out to form 10-inch circle. Once formed carefully lift the dough into the pie plate.

For a partially prebaked shell, you’ll want to place a sheet of aluminum foil over the crust and then cover it with either ceramic beads or use some dried beans, such as black beans to weight the crust down. Bake the weighted crust in a 400° preheated oven for 9 minutes. Before filling the crust use a fork to prick holes for venting to keep the crust from swelling.