Tomato + Feta Phyllo Tart
It’s been far too long since I’ve updated this blog – glad to be back with a great new recipe for a delicious vegetarian tart!
This savoury little pie is easy to prepare and incredibly aromatic and tasty. Even if vegetarian food doesn’t normally strike your fancy – I admit it very rarely strikes mine! – this recipe is well worth an open mind and a small bit of culinary effort. It is garlicky, full of flavour and smells out-of-this-world good … I guarantee you’ll want seconds and won’t miss the meat at all!
A small note of advice: Phyllo – a paper-thin dough used primarily in Mediterranean and Balkan cuisine – has a rather unfortunate (and undeserved) reputation for being extremely tricky to work with. If you find it tears or falls apart during preparation, simply cover any unused sheets with a damp tea towel to prevent drying. Always wrap excess dough in plastic and seal tightly before freezing.
TOMATO + FETA PHYLLO TART
Makes: 1 tart
6-8 sheets phyllo dough, defrosted if frozen
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tbsp homemade pesto (recipe follows)
1 ball fresh mozzarella (bocconcini), thinly sliced or torn
3 fresh garlic cloves, thinly sliced
4 fresh tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/3 cup crumbled fresh Feta cheese
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
3 tbsp toasted pine nuts
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit/200 degrees Celsius.
2. When working with the phyllo, have a damp tea towel, clean pastry brush and plenty of olive oil on hand. Oil the bottom and sides of a baking tray. Unroll the sheets of phyllo dough, remove one sheet, and immediately cover the remaining dough with the damp towel.
3. Place the single sheet on the oiled baking tray and brush lightly with olive oil. Repeat until you have 6-8 layers for the base. Create a rim along the edges by slightly folding the dough inward. Wrap any remaining dough tightly and store.
4. Brush pesto onto the dough in a thin, even layer. Cover with sliced mozzarella and layer with garlic, onion and tomato. Sprinkle with Feta and Parmesan cheeses and fresh parsley, then top with toasted pine nuts.
5. Bake 25 minutes or until phyllo dough turns golden and crispy. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes, then cut into squares.
Makes: 3 tablespoons
1 cup fresh basil leaves, loosely packed
1 large fresh garlic clove
3 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
Pinch red pepper flakes, if desired
2-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1. Place all ingredients – except olive oil – in the bowl of a small food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. Transfer from food processor to a small bowl and stir in olive oil, one tablespoon at a time, until of desired consistency.