28 August 2011

Summer Breakfasts

There's been so many yummy pictures of our dinners recently, I thought the famous Murphin breakfasts needed a little love too. With several different varieties of heirloom tomatoes in the garden, this is the time of year where it's use 'em or lose 'em - and there are A LOT to use! Soups, stocks, salsas, consomme - roasted, canned, sauteed and fried. By far, my favorite though is the tomato tart we make for breakfast, shown below. It's easy to make, elegently beautiful, great right out of the oven or at room temperature and perfect any time of day. I recommend them on a big platter in the middle of a weekend brunch. 

Tomato Tart

(serves 6 as part of a main course, 12 as a side dish)

1 sheet frozen puff pastry
2 T. Dijon mustard, mixed with a 1/2 c of honey or high quality maple syrup
2-4 tomatoes, depending on size
1/2 c cheese, shredded (we like gruyere and cheddar, but you can use anything you have on hand)
Salt and pepper
1 egg (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 and prepare the pastry - pull the sheet from the freezer and let stand to soften a bit before dividing. While you're waiting, slice your tomatoes and place them on a paper towel - all that liquid makes for a soggy tart. (Different colored tomoatoes with different flavor profiles make for more interesting tarts!) Cut the pastry into 6 equal squares and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment. If desired, prepare an egg wash by beating the egg with 1-2 T of water until well mixed, and brush the pastry for a rich, glazed color. "Dock" the pastry by poking holes all over each square with a fork or toothpick.

Now for the toppings. Swirl 1-2 T of the honey mustard on each square. Add sliced tomatoes and season with a healthy pinch of salt and pepper . Top with a sprinkle of cheese and fresh herbs. Bake for 15-17 minutes, turning halfway through. I've experimented with hotter temperatures and different bake times without too much effect on the final product - they're done when the tomatoes have dried out just slightly and the pastry is puffed and golden.  

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