Plum Tomato & Gruyère Tart

Plum Tomato & Gruyère Tart

This summer, with tomatoes in abundance, I went on the hunt for a tomato tart recipe.  I found this stunning tart, by Judy Kim, and had to try it.

This tart begins with the pastry, which is buttermilk-based.  It’s the most delicious pe crust I’ve tasted!It’s not difficult to make (and I say that with humility because I am not the best pie-crust maker) but you do have to follow some steps.  It’s hands-on…you use your fingers to blend the chilled butter into the flour mix.  A quick knead, a little time in the fridge, and you’re off to the races!

Plum Tomato & Gruyère Tart

This recipe calls for plum tomatoes, which makes me very happy when it’s not the height of tomato season.  Plum tomatoes are readily available and if you sit them on the counter for a few days, they will ripen up beautifully.  The Gruyère cheese along with the fresh garlic and thyme are the perfect complimentary flavors to go with the tomatoes and the buttermilk pie crust.

This tart is a stunner!  Not only is it so pretty, but it’s vegetarian and rich in flavor.

Plum Tomato & Gruyère Tart

Plum Tomato & Gruyère Tart

Makes one 9 1/2″ tart

Active Time: 30 minutes Bake Time: 30 minutes

Total Time (not including making dough): 1 hour 15 minutes


Single crust Buttermilk Pie Dough All-purpose flour, for rolling

1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, sliced thinly, about 1/4-inch thick rounds

1 tsp Kosher salt

6 ounces freshly grated gruyère cheese

1 large garlic clove, finely grated

2 tsp chopped fresh thyme 

Freshly ground black pepper

1 egg, beaten with 1 tbsp water

1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 

Fresh basil, for garnish

Prepare the double pie crust recipe, which can be made in advance; save the other half for later or make 2 tomato tarts. If frozen, thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Let pie dough come to room temperature, about 5 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll out round disk to 1/4-inch thickness. Keep dough moving and apply just enough flour to prevent it from sticking. Gently fold into quarters and transfer onto 10-inch tart pan. Carefully push the pastry into the corners and sides of the tart pan using the flat side of your index finger while avoiding stretching the dough. Use rolling pin to trim excess pastry, transfer excess to refrigerator for an optional decorative design.

Lay sliced tomatoes in a single layer on a prepared half sheet pan with paper towels, season with salt; set aside to drain excess water, about 10 minutes. Blot top of tomatoes just before using.

Place oven rack in middle and preheat oven to 400°F.

In a medium bowl, combine cheese, garlic, thyme and 1/2 tsp black pepper; spread cheese mixture evenly inside the tart shell. Place tomatoes in an overlapping design until the surface is covered.

Place the tart on a rimmed sheet pan and just before baking, lightly brush pastry with egg wash. Cover only the crust loosely with foil and bake directly on the baking steel or pizza stone. Bake for 10 minutes and remove the foil; continue baking until tomatoes are tender and crust is golden brown, about 30 minutes.

Transfer to a wire cooling rack for 15 minutes. Finish with drizzle of olive oil, cracked black pepper and chopped or torn fresh basil. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Crust options:

Leave crust plain, place in freezer until ready to use.

Using a butter knife, score edge of pastry on a diagonal all the way around. Place in freezer for 15 minutes or until ready to use.

Before freezing the tart pan, flatten the top rim of the pastry by pushing your thumb and index finger around the edges; chill in freezer. Roll chilled excess pastry to 1/8- inch thickness, cover both sides generously with flour and cut with pie cutters in various leaf shapes. Place leaves in a single layer on a rimmed sheet pan sprinkled with flour. Chill until frozen. Apply frozen pastry leaf cut outs with egg wash; partially cover the edge in a loose pattern of leaves or create a full wreath crown over the entire circumference. Place in freezer until ready to use.

Recipe by Judy Kim


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