Growing your own produce is all about freshness and flavour. But sometimes when you’ve got a generous harvest it can be hard to find a new way to cook with it. So, if your tomatoes are ripe and ready to bake, the basil is in full leaf and you’ve got salad coming out of your ears, well here’s a great, tried and tested recipe to savour the flavour of freshly picked produce.
- 3 firm, ripe plum tomatoes
- 1-tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato purée
- 3 tablespoons tomato passata
- 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
- 25g unsalted butter
- 10 leaves basil
- 225g ready-to-roll puff pastry, thawed if frozen
- Black pepper
- Dressed green salad, to serve
- Pre-heat the oven to 220°C/gas 8. Slice the tomatoes and then arrange on kitchen paper to absorb some of the excess liquid. Heat a 23cm non-stick ovenproof frying pan. Pour in the olive oil, add the onion and garlic and fry over a medium heat for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to brown.
- Add the tomato puree to the pan with the passata and chilli sauce, and cook over a moderate heat for about 3 minutes until the mixture has formed a fairly thick paste. Remove the pan from the heat and season the sauce with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Wipe the pan clean and rub with butter, taking care to thoroughly coat the sides of the pan. Arrange the tomato slices in a layer to cover the bottom of the pan and place the basil leaves in the gaps. Season to taste, then spread over the reserved tomato paste, being careful not to move the tomato slices or basil.
- Cut the pastry into a circle slightly larger than the frying pan, then carefully place over the layer of tomato paste. Tuck the pastry edges down the sides of the pan.
- Place in the oven and cook for 10 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 200°C/gas 6 and cook for another 15-20 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden.
- Remove from the oven; allow the tart to rest for one minute, then invert onto a plate. If any of the tomatoes become loose, simply place them back into the tart. Cut into wedges and serve with the fresh, green salad.