Posts Tagged 'tomato'

tomato and twice cheese tart

well i never did done make a savoury tart. never wanted to. except that bits a lie. i did make one once before. and it was the same tart. different recipe. it was unpleasant from start to the very bitter, messy end. i followed a recipe about which i had serious doubts. it was a pastry that was neither chilled nor blind baked – and into this inevitable disastrous pastry i was told to place a lot of tomatoes. tomatoes. the most soggifying food stuff i ever known. the entire time i muttered under my breath that this is not going to work. that it simply coudnt work. i had no faith whatsoever that this pastry wouldnt be a soggy mess. being the indefatigable empiricist i am however, i continued on. and being the self-congratulatory pedant i am, i was proven right. this time, rather than wading through the miasmic marsh of food blogs – i decided to make it up myself. i used my usual shortcrust pasty but omitted the sugar. i added a lot of salt, pepper and some oregano. and it worked like a dream. thank you to the good people of the river cafe. i chilled it. i blind baked it. and then i even brushed the base with some egg and put it back into the oven for 1 minute to seal it…so burned i was by my previous experience. it was good and tasted like summer in the dead of winter. it made me happy and self-satisfied.

ingredients

1 quatity shortcrust pastry (leave out the sugar and add 2tsp oregano, good pinch or two of salt, and pepper)

10 tomatoes – whatever you can get. i like them on the vine. and i like ones i can truss to be good. sigh.

2-3 garlic cloves finely sliced

bunch of basil

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1tsp dried oregano

pinch salt and pepper

250g mozzarella and goats cheese respectively (or whatever cheese you want. haloumi could be very interesting)

i also threw in a handful of sundried tomatoes. im not scared of hepatitis and i like them.

slice tomatoes into rounds. put into a bowl. add sundried tomatoes if you are using them. add the garlic, salt, pepper, oregano. tear in some basil. i also put about a quarter of the cheese in too – to let it marinade for a while in the juices and i think i did a good thing. add olive oil and stir to combine. i let this sit while i did my pastry so it could get better and better and then better again.

then i pulled out my chilling pastry – which looked like it was going to be a bit of a disaster. i blind baked it. at the last minute i took it out of the oven, brushed it with some egg wash and put it back in the oven for a minute. its meant to seal it so things dont leak out and get soggy. didnt really work but i tried…and thats all anyone can ask of me.

then i put the first tomato on.

and then some. dotted with cheese.

into oven. 200 degrees. 20 minutes. pizza pie tart. tots delicious.

pizza

my photographer was eaten by a giant pizza. now there are some extremely serious problems, including but not exclusive to: does anyone know how to turn this thing on? to name a few others, white balance, zoom, digital zoom (never to be used or touched), focus, manual focus, autofocus, i cant focus, i hate this thing, why is it flashing, who cares about a light source, and i just want to make my art. sadly the camera self destruct button turned out to be a jammie dodger biscuit and though delicious, solved none of the aforementioned problems. to make matters worse there was this little conceptual nugget i had to grapple with: how do i pour water into a well of flour at the same time as taking an in-focus shot of proceedings with a highly caffeinated, shaky hand? well the results are apparent here. apologies in advance for the quality of the images but im just one man, one man with a remarkable inability to use a camera. given that this troubled mind found itself cooking in troubled circumstances the results were not all i had dreamt them to be. yes, what you see here is a base that is simply too fat. there i said it. i fucked up. and im sorry. better pizza, better photos and better quality control coming soon…so please hang about.

ingredients

500g ’00’ flour

tsp salt

7g dried yeast

tsp sugar

2tbsp olive oil

325ml luke warm water

topping…

whatever you (jam)fancy. one here was made with:

thinly spread tomato sauce

thinly sliced zucchini

thinly sliced chorizo

handful of basil

some mozzarella torn over the top

for those less meat inclined there was also

thin smearing of tomato sauce

sliced cherry tomatoes

handful of basil

torn mozzarella

olive oil

first sieve the flour and salt onto your bench (work bench if you are so lucky). make a well in the centre. then put the water, yeast, sugar and olive oil into a jug and mix to combine. let this sit for 5 minutes to activate the yeast. then pour the yeast mixture into the centre of the well and slowly, with a fork, bring in the flour until it is all incorporated. knead until the dough is springy and smooth to the touch. then place dough in oiled and floured bowl, cover with a tea towel and let it prove for an hour until it has doubled in sized.

after an hour turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knock it back (bang the air out of it). divide it into 4 little balls and roll out your pizzas. about .5cm thick. place the base on an oiled and floured piece of tin foil (or a pizza stone if you have one) and then put whatever you like on top. give it some salt and pepper and drizzle some olive oil over the top. put it into an oven preheated to as hot as it will go and cook for about ten minutes until crispy and golden.

buffalo mozzarella, tomato and basil

theres really no point introducting much here. anything ill say will have been said before. but i will just say that this: dinner arose out of a need for beauty. the visual content of my day consisted of this. my gastronomic experience consisted of a bucket of anemic, undercooked and yet overcooked, floury hot chips from a student union employee who was lacking entirely in personality and joie de chip. if thats not enough im parenting a ferment that grows fouler by the day. so there was a sudden and pressing need to redress an imbalance and in a world devoid of beauty, return some small reminder that it still exists.

ingredients (yes its cheese and tomato but it still takes love and thought. any fool can tear some mozzarella and call it ‘sexy’ and slap it on an earthy wooden board and call it ‘rustic’ but heres what makes it taste better than it looks)

250g buffalo mozzarella

2 ripe tomatoes (and i threw in a couple of cherry tomatoes because i could)

marinade ingredients

grated zest of half lemon

15 basil leaves sliced very finely lengthways

2tsp oregano

4tsp good olive oil

1 garlic clove crushed

salt and pepper

put all marinade ingredients together and mix to combine. break up mozzarella, smear the marinade over the top and let it sit for 20 minutes. meanwhile cut tomatoes, sprinkle with salt and pepper. serve next to the mozzarella and give final drizzle of olive oil. beauty restored.