I thoroughly enjoy reading the blog Dash and Bella, produced by a local writer, mom, and talented pastry chef, Phyllis Grant. Her vulnerably honest writing style, gorgeous food photography, and drool-inducing recipes (she has a potty mouth too, which makes her all the more endearing), draw me in post after post. Inspired by her latest, which intertwined the tale of sending her youngest off to kindergarten with the construction of a rustic looking Early Girl tomato and cheese tart, I became determined to make one of my own.
After gathering all of the ingredients, with the exception of the kefir yoghurt cheese (I substituted goat cheese); I embarked on a solitary tart-making expedition. First, I made a basic tart dough, then put the disk of dough in the fridge to cool, while I prepared the other ingredients. When the oven was ready, I assembled the tart, carefully inserting an anchovy in the center of each early girl tomato, and then artfully placing them on the tart dough topped with cheese filling. I couldn’t wait to see the finished tart and my patience paid off. I have to channel Phyllis on this one, and say that the tart looked fucking amazing!
It goes without saying how much I love parenting Caleb and Sadie, but combined with working full-time and leading a pretty busy existence, I feel tired to the point of tears at times. During the baking process; however, I could feel my shoulders dropping, my taste-buds awakening, and my smile returning. This weekend alone couldn’t have come at a better time, and carving out some time to prepare an artful tart to share with my family (plans for dinner in S.F. with the All Family), was exactly the relaxation therapy I was in need of.
When I took that first sweet, salty bite of roasted tomato stuffed with anchovy, I was transported to Corsica for some reason. Never been, but it felt like food one should be eating in Corsica, so I went with it.
Thank you to Dash and Bella for inspiring me with such a f’ing delicious tart recipe and thanks too for helping me channel my inner-truck driver…it’s liberating!
I hope you get a chance to make this tart at home before Early Girl tomatoes leave our local markets. For the recipe, just click here.