Hello, and how are you peeps doing? Good grief, it’s been awhile! It’s taken some time to get back into this gig, and I doubt the mojo is fixed after only one successful weekend of trying out a new recipe. (I attempted to do so a couple of times prior…didn’t work out.) The simple explanation is – there’s a crap ton of stuff going on. And I really can’t say a whole lot about it. If you’ve been following this place at all, you’ll know one thing that was going on is that we did a major kitchen and living space renovation, taking down walls in favor of an open concept style. And we’re loving it! In addition to that is a whole lot of other stuff. Stressful stuff. I tend to get quieter when stress piles up. But I’m trying to get back here. Fortunately the reward in doing so is a pretty tasty one!
Look, Ma! So few ingredients! This is definitely one of our favorite things. I’ll make something with a long list of ingredients, but let’s face it. Tastiness and a great meal should not be hard things. Let’s start with few ingredients sometimes.
If you’re unable to get the Gruyere cheese, a regular swiss would do, or you could even go more Italian style with this tart and use fresh mozzarella. If you can get the Gruyere though, it truly is a wonderful melting cheese that is great for a cheesy treat once in a while.
Fresh thyme is called for in this deceptively simple-looking tart, and hey, that’s fine by me. It’s my favorite! I’ll throw it in pretty much everything that can stand to benefit from the added deliciousness of fresh herbs. Underneath that thyme in this instance, though, is also some fresh rosemary. I had both in my garden, do I decided to blend the two this time. The rosemary leaves got a good chop before using.
Go ahead and get those tomatoes sliced. I didn’t need quite all of my three, but you can throw some salt and pepper on those and snack on them while the tart bakes. If your tomatoes seem particularly juicy that day, you can blot them with a couple of paper towels, or if you want to go to the extra trouble, place them on a paper-towel-lined plate to soak up some of the juices. I blotted mine a little, and while the tart seemed like it might be too juicy, by the time it was done baking, much of those juices had cooked off.
This is the potentially tricky part – rolling out the puff pastry. We live in an exceptionally warm climate, and even with our AC running, it’s still just too warm in my kitchen for this stuff sometimes. Be sure that, while the pastry is thawed, it’s also very cold prior to using. Make sure it stays in the fridge until ready to use. I think mine may not have been quite cold enough, hence the uneven rolling out (and it wanted to stick to the counter despite the flour I put down). Not to fear, though. Place the rolled out pastry as best you can on the baking sheet. I rolled it up with and around my rolling pin, then unrolled that onto the baking sheet. From this point on, you can just call this this tart “rustic”.
The sprinkling on of the cheeeeese. Mmmm!
I had more herbs than I realized, so Infrequent Miniature Cooking Assistant sprinkled some on for me before the layer of tomatoes, in addition to what goes on top of the tomatoes. Win begets win!
Hello, little tomatoes! Thank you for being you! Now get on that tart and prepare to be devoured.
And there it is folks, in all its tomato, cheesy, bacon-y, herb-y glory. The pastry is crisp, golden and buttery. The tomatoes are pretty, well, pretty with all that color. And it smells like it wants trouble. The kind where you take a fork to it. And do what you do.
I admit that I wasn’t really expecting a whole lot out of this recipe. Sure, I knew the puff pastry would be good, and sometimes that’s all you need. It’s one of those ingredients you can’t go wrong with (and if you happened to, I don’t want to know about it, I have a carefully constructed fantasy world to maintain about puff pastry). Throw some stuff on it, and wham! Instant goodness. However. This is a killer recipe all around. The cheese, the herbs, the roasted tomato flavor, the BACON. It’s literally a taste explosion on your tongue. Yes, yes it is. I will not take that back. Super easy, super simple, yet you get a ton more back from all of that. Make this for a simple evening meal, for guests, for anyone who’s taste buds need to be wowed. And enjoy!
Tomato, Bacon & Gruyere Tart
from Food Network Magazine, September 2015
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes Level: Easy Serves: 4-6, depending on size of cuts
- 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
- 1 1/2 cups grated Gruyere cheese
- 4 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
- 3 tomatoes, sliced thin
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon water
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Roll the puff pastry onto a lightly floured surface into about a 10×14 rectangle and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle the cheese onto the pastry, making sure to leave a two-inch border all the way around the pastry. Sprinkle the crumbled bacon over the cheese and then half the fresh herbs. Layer the tomatoes slightly on top of one another, making three rows, and sprinkle with the rest of the herbs, salt and pepper. Fold the long pastry border sides partially over the tomatoes and cut decorative slits up them. Fold the shorter ends in towards the rest of the tart and pinch to seal. Mix the 1 teaspoon water with the egg and brush along all the exposed parts of the pastry. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden brown.