“We’re having tomato tart for dinner? Ha ha. What’s that babe?” Those are the words my husband uttered when I shared our plan for dinner. And even after I described what we were having, he still looked at me dazed and confused. That's okay. He'll explain medicine, I'll explain food.  

Two nights ago I was in the mood to create a seasonal vegetarian meal. We eat meat or fish most nights and I thought it would be fun to make something different that highlights the beautiful, juicy tomatoes from our local farmers market.

I was interested in baking a tomato tart and perused the cookbook Plenty More written by Yotam Ottolenghi from London, in hopes of finding a recipe. Fortunately, there was one. I’ve made a few recipes from his book and they have been delicious so I assumed this would be as well.

The recipe calls for puff pastry however I had purchased a package of phyllo dough last week and decided to use that instead. I like the texture of phyllo dough; light and flaky. I also reduced the amount of butter suggested and switched a few of the ingredients. The idea of following a recipe to a T is brilliant, however if I want to lighten a recipe and/or want to use ingredients I have on hand, I have no problem subtracting and substituting.

The recipe was easy to make and quite delicious. It’s also a very beautiful meal and would be an impressive dish to serve to guests. I served it with my kale Caesar salad and a glass of rose. Not surprisingly, Luke enjoyed it very much and even had a slice the next day for lunch. Enjoy!

1/3 c unsalted butter at room temp
2 eggs beaten
1½ c bread crumbs (I made fresh bread crumbs with day old bread in the food processor)
¾ c fresh ground almonds
1 c ricotta cheese
2 cloves of garlic
½ c finely grated Parmesan cheese
5 sheets of phyllo dough
Butter for greasing the phyllo dough
2 lbs of seasonal tomatoes
24 black wrinkly olives
¼ c grated Parmesan cheese
½ c fresh basil

-Defrost phyllo dough in the refridgerator 6-8 hours prior to cooking
-Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
-Line a 17 ½ by 12 ½ inch baking sheet with parchment paper
-In a food processor combine the first 7 ingredients and blend until smooth
-Set aside blended ingredients
-Roll out the defrosted phyllo dough (wet a paper towel and lay over the phyllo dough to keep it moist and prevent cracking)
-Lay one large sheet of phyllo on the prepared pan
-Lightly coat the phyllo dough with melted butter or olive oil using a pastry brush
-Repeat with the remaining 4 sheets of phyllo
-Using a silicone spatula, gently spread blended mixture across ½ to ¾ of the sheet (you’ll want a good amount of mixture for each slice therefore try not to spread too thin)
-Trim the remaining phyllo with kitchen scissors and remove
-Fold the edges up to create a rim
-Lay the tomato slices on top of each other in 4-5 rows
-Sprinkle with ¼ c grated parmesan cheese
-Place the olives sporadically across the tart
-Bake for 30-35 minutes until the crust is golden
-Scatter basil leaves on top
-Slice and serve