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Rustic Tomato Tart in a Basil Crust
Recipe Submitted by: The Florida Tomato Committee
Revised: August 15, 2000

Categories: Entrees>Appetizers>Vegetarian
Yield: 24 portions
Ingredients Method
Pastry
5 cups all-purpose flour

3 Tbl. dried basil

1 teaspoon salt

8 oz.unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1 cup cold water

Filling
12 tablespoons olive oil

3 qts. halved and thinly sliced onion

4 clove garlic, minced

salt to taste

4 tablespoon semolina or fine cornmeal

8 large fresh Florida tomatoes

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

4 cups grated provolone or mozzarella cheese
1. To make the pastry, combine the flour, basil, salt, and butter in a food processor. Turn the machine on for 10 seconds. Add 8 oz. of the water and run the machine for 5 seconds. Add the remaining 8 oz.of water and turn the machine on for about 7 more seconds, until the mixture forms damp crumbs.

2. Empty the crumbs into a bowl and pack the pastry together, adding a few more drops of cold water if necessary. Kneed the dough 2 or 3 times in the bowl, then flatten it into a thick disk on a sheet of plastic wrap. Wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

3. Heat the olive oil in a large heavy skillet. Add the onion and sauté over low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the garlic, salt the onion slightly, and sauté 1 minute more. Scrap the onion onto a plate and cool. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

4. To assemble, divide dough into 4 equal portions. Roll each into a 13-inch circle on a sheet of lightly floured wax paper. Invert the pastry onto a baking sheet and peel off the paper.

5. Sprinkle the semolina or cornmeal onto the pastry in roughly a 9-inch circle in the center of the tart. Spread the onions over the semolina. Add Cheese on top of onions. Core the tomatoes and cut them into slices nearly 1/4-inch thick. Arrange the slices in an overlapping circle over the onions, with several slices in the center. Lightly salt and pepper the tomatoes.

6. Fold the edges of the dough up over the filling, pleating it as you go. Bake on the center rack of the oven for 45 minutes. Slide the sheet out and cover the tomatoes with the grated cheese. Bake for 10 more minutes (Bake in one time period 55 minutes)

7. Cool the tarts on the sheet on a rack for 10 to 15 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve.

Chef's Tips:
Salad To-Go: Serve warm catfish over chilled romaine tossed in a Caesar dressing with cherry tomatoes, Parmesan shreds and sour dough bread.

Plated Entree: Top catfish with a tomato basil sauce and serve with garlic herbed orzo or penne pasta.

Italian Entree: Top hot catfish with a light tomato sauce and shredded mozzarella and Parmesan and broil until golden. Serve with sautéed mixed vegetables.

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