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Tomato Tarte Tatin

Tomato Tarte Tatin

TWIST ON A CLASSIC Food writer and stylist Julia Hellums has made a classic dish new by switching in tomatoes for apples in her Tomato Tarte Tatin. (hartphoto.com / Food styling by Carla Buerkle, carlabuerkle.com)

Julia notes that the tomatoes and shallots can be roasted up to two days in advance of assembling and baking the Tarte Tatin. For the puff pastry, her favorite brand is Dufour. Julia adds that the Tomato Tarte Tatin can be made the day before and reheated in a 350-degree oven for 20 minutes before serving.

Ingredients: 

15 to 20 ripe plum tomatoes (small to medium sized)
6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 to 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
½ cup sugar
¼ cup water
12 shallots, peeled
8 ounces prepared puff pastry, defrosted according to instructions on package
½ cup grated parmesan
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Basil leaves, for garnish

Recipe directions: 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. With a sharp paring knife, cut the core out of each tomato and cut an X on the opposite side. Place the tomatoes in a large bowl and pour boiling water over them to cover. Let the tomatoes stand one minute or less just until the skin peels easily; drain and peel all skins from the tomatoes.

Cut the peeled tomatoes in half length-wise and place cut-side down on an oiled half-sheet pan. Sprinkle the tomato halves evenly with 4 tablespoons oil, vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper. Bake one hour.

Arrange the peeled shallots on a separate oiled half-sheet pan. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons oil, salt, and pepper. Bake 20 minutes.

Line a 9 ½ inch round cake pan or Pyrex dish with parchment paper. Warm sugar and water in a heavy bottom sauce pan over medium heat, stirring until sugar melts. After the sugar has melted, raise the heat to high. Do not stir with a spoon but swirl the pan to prevent burning until the mixture turns a light golden brown. Pour the caramel immediately into the parchment-lined pan.

Arrange the roasted tomato halves neatly over the caramel. Top with the shallots in between the tomatoes so the tart is tightly packed. Sprinkle cheese evenly over the top of the vegetables.

Roll out the puff pastry into a circle slightly larger than the cake pan; prick with a fork to make holes for steam to escape. Place the pastry loosely over the tomatoes and shallots, tucking in the edges around the sides of the dish. Brush the pastry with melted butter. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden.

Remove from the oven and cool for five minutes before turning the Tarte Tatin out of the pan. To do so, run a knife around the edge of the pan; place a warm plate over the top and turn the tarte upside down and onto the plate. Gently peel off the parchment paper and garnish with basil leaves. Serve warm with a green salad. Serves 4-6.

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