It’s heirloom season once again and what I love most about these end-of-summer beauties are their uniqueness in flavors, colors, textures and shapes. This rustic tart (or otherwise known as a galette) has a delicious flaky crust and a beautifully-bold filling of sweet heirlooms and rich, golden cheese.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 stick (1/4 lb.) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup crème fraîche, chilled
Heirloom tomatoes, sliced
Semi-hard sheep’s milk cheese, such as manchego
Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, and butter pieces in a food processor or in a medium bowl if blending by hand. Blend just until the butter is incorporated into the dry ingredients. Mix in the crème fraîche. Turn the entire mix out onto a cutting board and gently push it together into a pile. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F. Place the sliced tomatoes in a colander and sprinkle generously with coarse salt. Lay the tomatoes on several sheets of paper towel to drain (dried tomatoes will make a crisp tart).
Dust a work surface well with flour and roll the dough into a circle about 1/8-inch thick. Dust flour under the dough if it starts to stick.
Carefully slide a rimless baking sheet under the dough. Leaving a 3-inch boarder, scatter the cheese on top of the dough, then arrange the tomatoes evenly over the cheese. Fold the edges of the dough over the tomatoes, making pleats as you fold and leaving the center of the tart open.
Bake the tart until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool on a rack.
Drizzle the top of the tart with a touch of olive oil and a sprinkle of coarse salt. Slice and serve with a simple, lightly dressed salad.
Over the weekend I spent some time working in the garden with my pops – weeding, picking oranges, checking sugar levels on the wine grapes and harvesting a large batch of heirloom tomatoes.
I absolutely LOVE heirlooms due to their refreshing and sweet flavor and unique colors and shapes. Now what to do with this batch of colorful beauties? Recently I experience a delicious dish from French Blue in St. Helena, California which inspired tonight’s appetizer. They offer this irresistible house made farmers cheese over grilled bread topped with strawberries and tomatoes. It’s to die for. So, that is the inspiration to this Heirloom, Peach and Fresh Mozzarella crostini. Sweet and savory, this is the perfect summertime appetizer.
3 – 4 small / medium heirloom tomatoes (or 1 large one), sliced
1 large peach, thinly sliced
Fresh mozzarella, sliced
Fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling
Baguette of your choice (I used Casa LaBelle Rustic Baguette)
Salt & Pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice baguette into 1/2 inch slices and coat with olive oil. Season lightly with salt & pepper and bake them for about 8 – 10 minutes until golden brown. Remove crostini’s from the oven and layer with a peach slice, tomato and mozzarella. Drizzle balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Casa LaBelle Bread – Casa LaBelle is a small bakery located in the tiny resort town of Monte Rio in Sonoma County.
Peach, Mozzarella and Sweet Basil – Mike’s Truck Garden (one of my favorite local produce stands)
Heirloom Tomatoes – homegrown and straight from the garden.