We have had some interesting weather this summer. Rain, and then heat wave, and even… hail?! The local tomatoes really took a hit thanks to everyone’s fave month, Juneuary, and some Vancouverites are still sporting green tomatoes on the vine at the end of August. Seriously.
[I am absolutely not complaining about our weather, rather, merely making observations, and noting also that we have had many fun-filled, sun-filled days of perfect temperatures for which I am very grateful.]
On with the story. Klippers Organic Farm, the vendor I volunteer for at the Vancouver Farmer’s Market, is located in Cawston, BC, about 4 hours east of us (aka the organic farming capital of Canada). The climate there is hot and dry, and much more suited to growing beautiful, luscious field tomatoes than our temperamental-weather city.
Every week this month I’ve taken home a double armful (this is a real measurement) of the most flavourful, colorful heirloom tomatoes. It’s a source of serious joy. Mega joy. I can’t even explain it in words. I’d have to show you with my tomato dance and squeals of glee.
In fact, I hate to admit it, but I don’t even have any good glamour shots of these babies. We scarf them much too fast for me to even capture it on film. Light speed scarfing. We make sauces, we roast them, we munch them down raw. They end up in soups, stews, and some frozen for the sad and inevitable moment when the days have grown short and those tart but sweet, juicy tomatoes are merely a reminder of carefree, warmer times.
And this tart. I can’t really express how much you need to make this tart. A lot. That’s how much.
I stressed out a little bit about the gluten-free, dairy-free thing. I have had very little success with baking that involves gluten-free flours AND no dairy. So, I added butter. I don’t know. I just couldn’t handle the idea that I might spend the evening pouring love into a tart and have it turn out terribly because I tried some crummy substitution. If anyone has a killer gluten-free AND dairy-free tart shell recipe, send it my way!
For now, I have this all purpose gluten-free flour mix and two topping options for your very own, most-delicious tomato tart that I am certain you will adore. I made one plain tart with just tomatoes and garlic. The second was a goat feta, olive, red onion, garlic combo (on top of the tomatoes). Parmesan and basil ribbons were sprinkled generously on both.
HEIRLOOM TOMATO TART
inspired by Tartlette and 20somethingcupcakes
serves 2-4 (makes 2 6-8 inch tarts)
For the gluten-free flour mix (note: this makes 4 1/2 cups and you’ll only use 1 1/4 for this recipe, the rest will keep in an airtight container in the fridge or cupboard until you’re ready to use it and can be used in savoury or sweet recipes):
-1 1/4 cup brown rice flour
-1 cup sweet rice flour
-1 cup quinoa flour
-1/2 cup tapioca flour
-1/2 cup potato starch
-1/4 cup teff flour
-2 tsp xanthan gum
or find the original GF flour mix that I based my recipe on here
For the tart shell dough:
1 1/4 cup all purpose gluten-free flour mix
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick of butter (1/2 cup)
1/4 cup cold water
For the toppings:
3 large heirloom tomatoes, sliced
1/8 cup (or a small handful) pitted olives
1/8 cup goat feta, crumbled
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 red onion, sliced very thinly
olive oil to drizzle
1/8 cup parmesan cheese
6 fresh basil leaves, sliced into ribbons
In your food processor (or mixer, or by hand), pulse the dry ingredients together. Add the butter and mix until you have small chunks. Pour in the cold water until the dough just comes together, take out the dough and form it into a ball. Wrap in saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before rolling.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Slice your tomatoes, lightly salt them, and lay them on a cloth or paper towel to absorb some of their moisture.
When the dough is chilled, generously flour your working surface and rolling pin and roll your dough into two 6 to 8-inch rounds. Leaving room around the edges to fold the dough over, layer your fillings in the centre (I did tomatoes and garlic in one tart and feta, olives, red onions, and garlic in the other). Fold the edges of the dough over – this part might get a little messy, but don’t worry, you are an artist, it will turn out great!
Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool and drizzle with parmesan, olive oil, and basil.