In my quest to use up the backyard tomato harvest, I’ve run through quite a few dishes: pizzas topped with tomatoes, grilled tomatoes, caprese salads with a sprinkling of fresh basil, penne amatriciana (the “cinque P” kind), veggie curry with tomatoes, cherry tomato focaccia, and a few days ago, a luscious tomato tart with caramelized onions, goat cheese, and sliced tomatoes on a black pepper, cornmeal crust.
The tart crust practically made itself, thanks to my food processor. I used Nick Malgieri’s cornmeal tart dough recipe (p 101, “How to Bake”), plus a healthy grinding of black pepper. Whiz 3/4 cup all purpose flour, 3/4 cup cornmeal, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper and 1/2 tsp baking powder in the processor until blended (about 3 or 4 1-second pulses). Next, cut 6 tablespoons of cold, unsalted butter into chunks and scatter in the bowl. Using the pulse function, cut in the butter until the mixture looks like coarse breadcrumbs (it took my processor about 20 pulses). Now add 1 large egg, and continue pulsing until the dough forms a ball.
Turn the dough out onto a floured pastry board and roll into a circle. Fit the dough into a 10″ tart pan with a removable bottom, pressing firmly into the fluted sides. Chill, covered with plastic wrap, until ready to use (overnight is fine).
Slice three or four medium to small tomatoes; spread out on paper towels to drain. Slice two small onions and saute in a little butter and olive oil until deeply browned; cool to room temp. Spread the cooled onions over the chilled tart dough, then sprinkle with 2 or 3 oz of plain chevre, crumbled. Layer the drained tomato slices over the cheese & onions, overlapping each slice halfway. Bake the assembled tart immediately for 35-45 minutes at 350, until golden brown and fragrant.
Cool slightly in the pan. To remove the sides of the tart pan, stand it on a can or flat-topped canister and gently slide the ring downward. The tart is delicious just as it comes from the oven, or just slightly warm, and the cornmeal crust is sturdy enough to handle refrigeration and reheating.