Simple Heirloom Tomato Tart with Whipped Feta
Late summer is the time for all things tomato. This easy heirloom tomato tart recipe pairs tomatoes at their peak freshness with whipped feta on a flakey garlic puff pastry base. It comes together in just 25 minutes and is the perfect complement to a crisp glass of white wine on a warm summer day.
Difference between heirloom tomatoes and regular tomatoes
Heirloom tomatoes are prized for their flavor and seeds. They are generally open pollinated by nature (think birds and bees) rather than science and genetic modification. Heirloom tomatoes come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors and have been gaining popularity in the past 5-10 years.
Standard tomatoes are modified to look attractive in the grocery store. Have you ever purchased a perfectly round, red tomato only to cut into it and it taste like nothing? Yeah, that’s because it’s been modified for its appearance rather than flavor.
It should be noted that you can find delicious standard tomatoes and not so delicious heirloom tomatoes. If you are making this tart in peak tomato season, you can use whichever tomatoes you like.
How do I make a tart gluten free?
Tart and pie dough is not always easy to make gluten free. When I have the time, I like to make my own dough, however, this is not a common occurrence. Thankfully, there are some decent brands on the market that have figured it out.
Puff pastry is essential for this specific recipe. I don’t recommend attempting to use a gluten free pie dough, either homemade or store bought. The flakiness of puff pastry makes this tart extra special.
This dough is one of my favorites as a replacement for puff pastry. I am always impressed by the quality of Schar products and stock many of them in my own pantry.
Ingredients you’ll need
This heirloom tomato tart recipe calls for a just a few simple ingredients.
- Puff pastry. Puff pastry is a dough that has many layers of butter. This results in a very flakey crust that is perfect for an easy, no fuss tart. You can use either regular puff pastry or a gluten free option.
- Garlic. Of course a recipe on this blog wouldn’t be complete without garlic. You can use fresh cloves or the frozen crushed garlic that I have been using lately.
- Heirloom tomatoes. You will want to find the ripest tomatoes you can find. It is not 100% necessary to use heirloom tomatoes, but I do recommend only using high quality, ripe tomatoes. Bonus points if they’re from your own garden!
- Feta cheese. I like to use sheep’s milk or Bulgarian feta, but you can use whatever is available at your local store.
- Cream cheese. This helps mellow the feta cheese out and lends a creamy base for the tart.
- Lemon zest. I always love adding a little bit of lemon zest to strong cheeses to brighten up the flavor.
- Fresh mint. Mint and feta cheese is a match made in heaven. Basil would be a fantastic replacement if you are not a fan of mint.
- Olive oil. High quality olive oil is key here because you will be using it as a finishing touch on your beautiful tart.
- Salt/Pepper. Large flakey sea salt is perfect for this tart, along with fresh cracked black pepper.
Step by Step Instructions
- First you will need to defrost the puff pastry. I recommend doing this in the refrigerator overnight, but if you are short on time you can defrost it on the counter for 20 minutes.
- Next you will unfold the dough and roll out it so it is 1/8 inch thick. Puff pastry is usually rolled to a 1/4 inch thickness.
- Prick the dough with a fork leaving a 1 inch border along the edges.
- Chill the dough for 10 minutes.
- Once the dough is chilled, brush it with garlic olive oil and bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.
- While the dough is baking, slice the tomatoes into 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch slices.
- Add the feta cheese, cream cheese, and lemon zest to a food processor and blend until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes).
- Allow the crust to cool completely.
- Once cooled press down on the center of the dough if it puffed up.
- Smooth the whipped feta onto the tart leaving a 1 inch border.
- Arrange the fresh tomato on top of the whipped feta placing the fresh mint in between slices.
- Drizzle with olive oil and salt/pepper.
- Enjoy immediately.
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Heirloom Tomato Tart with Whipped Feta
- 1 Food Processor
- 1 sheet puff pastry gluten free if needed
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 4 tbsp olive oil divided
- 8 oz feta cheese
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 1 lemon zested
- 1 lb heirloom tomatoes sliced 1/4"-1/2"
- 2 oz fresh mint leaves
- Defrost the puff pastry in the refrigerator overnight or on the counter for 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Roll the puff pastry out to 1/4" thick with a little gluten free flour if needed.
- Prick the dough with a form leaving a 1" border along the edges. Chill for 10 minutes.
- Mix the chopped garlic with 2 T olive oil. Brush it on the puff pastry dough.
- Bake the dough until golden brown, about 20-25 minutes. Cool completely.
- While the crust is baking, add the feta, cream cheese, and lemon zest to a food processor. Blend together until smooth and fluffy, scraping every few minutes. This should take 5-7 minutes.
- Once the crust is cool, gently press down the center if it puffed up leaving a 1" border around the edges.
- Spread the whipped feta mixture over the crust.
- Layer the tomatoes on top of the feta placing mint leaves between slices.
- Drizzle with remaining 2 T olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper on top.
- Serve and enjoy immediately.