Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pesto flavored cherry tomato tart

Ah, my poor Italian soccer team! Six days ago they were eliminated from the World Cup —which was very sad both because they were the winners of the last edition and because they totally deserved to lose and go home. To add insult to injury, ever since then every team I liked and routed for —the US, Switzerland, England, Mexico, you name it— has been eliminated, while the teams that historically I've never liked —Argentina, just to name one— have advanced to the quarter finals. And since I am a rabid soccer fan, I've seen or at least listen to on the radio to every single game, which means that lately I have eaten in front of the tv quite a lot, washing my meals down with tons of ice cold beer.

I know, I sound like a guy.

Anyways, I've made this the other day and it turned out very good, it has all the elements of pesto, like basil, pine nuts and Parmesan cheese, plus some fresh summer tomatoes which, if you as me, make everything taste better. And since I really don't have anything better to do I even made my own crust. If you want the pesto flavored crust, you'll have to make your own too since it's not sold anywhere. If you don't have time, I guess you can make it with a regular crust and mix some pesto into the filling.


2 cups flour
one bunch of basil
7 tablespoons very cold butter
6 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 clove of garlic
1 /14 cup cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1 lemon
Extra virgin olive oil

Wash, dry and rip the basil into small pieces. Place flour in a food mixer and add a pinch of salt, basil and the butter, cut into small pieces. Pulse until you obtain a crumbly mixture. Add a scant half cup of cold water to the mixture and pulse some more until you obtain a ball of dough. Roll into plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

In the mean time, place tomato halves in a large bowl, season them with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, the grated rind of a lemon, sliced garlic and a little salt, and let marinate in a cool place for about 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface, prepare a 9-inch baking pan by placing a sheet of parchment paper over it. Lay rolled out dough over it, cover dough with another layer of parchment paper and place a handful of beans over the paper to weigh it down. Place crust in the oven and cook for 15 minutes, then remove beans and upper layer of parchment paper and bake for another 10  minutes. eove from oven and let it cool.

In the mean time mix cream cheese with a little salt, most of the toasted pine nuts, Parmesan cheese and whatever water the tomato mixture has produced while marinating. When the crust has cooled off place cheese mixture in it, top with tomato mixture, sprinkle with salt and pepper and garnish with some more basil and pine nuts.


  1. Mmmmmm, this looks incredibly delicious and summery! I imagine this could even serve as a side dish at a summertime party with other foods.

  2. Holy cow, that thing is beautiful! Love it!

  3. Listen...if my cherry tomatoe take off like I hope they do, you'll have to come over and take some home. Would so LOVE some of that now!



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