Are you already imagining how good this tastes? Can you smell the soothing waft of fresh basil as you read the title? Can you picture how beautifully tempting this tart looks? If your answer is an affirmative to all of these questions then I want to be best friends with you ! My brain began exploding with taste and smell centre fireworks when I came across this recipe. This combination of cherry tomatoes, basil and mozzarella can never ever ever go wrong. The tart tomatoes are well balanced by the mild mozzarella and the gentle basil flavors. The tart crust is equally flavorful with the addition of minced basil and garlic. A must try recipe with very few and simple ingredients to begin with but an assured tasty output.
Tomato Mozzarella Basil tart
Recipe source : Annies Eats
For the dough:
1/3 cup fresh basil leaves
1-2 cloves garlic
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp. kosher salt ( I used plain salt)
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 8-10 pieces
4-5 tbsp. ice-cold water
For the filling:
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced ( I had about 100 g on hand)
Ripe cherry tomatoes
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1-2 tbsp. minced fresh basil
To make the dough, mince the basil and the garlic together. If you are making the pie crust by hand take the flour in a bowl. To it add salt, the minced basil and garlic and unsalted butter. Work quickly to rub the butter into the flour till it resembles pea sized crumbles. Now add 4 tablespoons of chilled water and form a tough but pliable dough. Add the remaining tablespoon only if you find the dough to be very tough. Flatten the dough to a 4 inch disc and wrap in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 210 °C. Place the chilled dough on a lightly floured work surface and roll to form a 12 inch circle. Transfer the rolled dough with the help of a rolling-pin over a lightly buttered 9 inch tart pan. Trim the excess dough and use this to reinforce the edges. Keep the dough lined tart pan in the fridge for at least half an hour. Next cover the pan with aluminium foil and place coins over the surface. (Coins serve as excellent pie weights !) Blind bake in the preheated oven for 10 -12 minutes. Then, remove the foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
Now, layer the empty pie shell with slices of mozzarella. Arrange the tomato slices in an even layer of the mozzarella. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Finish with freshly grated mozzarella and some fresh basil on top. Bake a pre-heated oven at 190° C for about 30 minutes till the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbling and browned at places. Rotate the tart halfway through baking. Cool for 5 minutes , slice and serve warm.
While making the pie dough, especially when you knead it by hand, don’t be bothered if you find unmixed butter bits in your dough. It’s this butter which makes the crust crisp and flaky.