I’m always complaining that I lack inspiration for lunches. Weekdays are worse because it has to be packable for Hubby, but even for weekends I struggle to come up with something that requires a wee bit more effort that doesn’t end up feeling like a dinner meal. Which is why I generally try to conspire to be in charge of suppers at the weekend 😉 and leave the lunches to Hubby, who always has better ideas for it than me anyway. Like this! It’s such a perfect summer lunch – the puff pastry base makes it much much lighter than a pizza, the abundance of tomatoes makes it really fresh, and there’s no slaving over a flame in this heat (yes, even in Scotland!) as you just pop the whole thing in the oven.
We’ve tried this with big fat vine tomatoes and with little sweet cherry tomatoes, and it’s good either way or using a mix of both. And as we’re right in the middle of the British tomato season you can literally have your pick of them 🙂
We’re really lucky in that we have access to some fabulous tommies either from our local, Real Foods on Broughton Street, or if we pop up to the Edinburgh Farmer’s Market on a Saturday the amazing selection from the peeps at Clyde Valley Tomatoes.
As well as struggling for lunchtime ideas I also suck at ‘Summer’ food, which is why the blog has been a wee bit quiet recently… But I’ve been trying a few new things out though so will hopefully be back to posting a little more regularly!
- 1 pack ready made (and ready rolled) puff pastry
- assorted tomatoes, sliced
- 1 ball buffalo mozzarella cheese
- parma ham
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced/grated
- 1/2 small red onion, finely diced
- 1/4 cup tomato puree (we’re loving Cirio at the moment!)
- 1 generous tbsp ketchup (Heinz’s posh roasted garlic, thyme and honey edition highly recommended)
- 2-3 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 tsp sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive/rapeseed oil
- milk for glazing
- a few dashes of magi seasoning (optional)
- chilli infused rapeseed oil (we used Supernature’s) (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 220C/430F. Line your baking tray with baking parchment before drizzling some olive oil over it and smearing it over the parchment with your fingers (or some kitchen roll) until the oil is fairly evenly spread. Unfurl the puff pastry sheet and centre it on the parchment. Score a 1 inch/2.5cm border around the edge of the pastry without cutting all the way through. Leave at room temperature for 10 minutes, or per the instructions on the box, which give you more than enough time to slice up the tomatoes and…
- …make up the sauce, by combining the tomato puree, ketchup, garlic, balsamic, sugar, salt and pepper, and Magi (if using) and mix well – you’re wanting the sauce to have a paste-like consistency. Spread the sauce all over the pastry, taking care to keep it all within the border (otherwise the border won’t rise up).
- Drain the mozzarella, tear it into small chunks and then scatter evenly over the sauce. Scatter the diced red onions over the cheese. Tear the parma ham (we found thirds worked well) and dot these all over the sauce. Finally, lay a generous spread of tomato slices on top and then season the lot with salt and pepper.
- Brush the border of the pastry with milk to glaze and then pop into the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until the pastry border has risen up and is a lovely golden brown. Before serving, scatter some torn up basil over the tart. Hubby says to get the best flavour from fresh basil, tear them from the stems and lightly clap the leaves between your hands a few times to release the oils, and then tear into smaller pieces. Alternatively, frozen pre-chopped basil works really well too – I don’t know about you but there’s always way too much basil in a packet for me to actually ever finish so being able to grab a handful out of the freezer makes me not twitch about food waste!
- Finally, drizzle all over with a bit of olive or rapeseed oil before slicing and serving. We are big fans of Supernature’s lovely chilli infused rapeseed oil which compliments all those lovely tomatoes while adding a subtle kick to the whole thing.