Tomato Tart With Puff Pastry

Tomato Tart With Puff Pastry

A stunning tomato tart is the ultimate taste of summer, and this recipe is an easy preparation with frozen puff pastry and ripe, garden-fresh tomatoes. A savory layer of garlic, herb, and Parmesan-seasoned cream cheese makes it a fabulous appetizer or main dish for a light lunch. If you have a box of puff pastry in the freezer, a tomato tart is an excellent way to use it.

Simple Recipe, Big Flavors

This tart is all about the tomatoes, so be sure to use very ripe, in-season tomatoes. Multicolored heirloom slicing tomatoes are a great option for more visual interest. Grated parmesan, garlic, fresh herbs, and a bit of lemon zest give the cream cheese its fabulous flavor. Parmegiano Reggiano is perfect in this recipe, but feel free to use freshly grated pecorino Romano or Grana Padano in the spread mixture instead.

The optional balsamic reduction adds fantastic flavor to the baked tart, and it's easy to make with one cup of balsamic vinegar, or you can pick it up at the store. Or, before serving, sprinkle the tomatoes with extra grated or shredded cheese, fresh basil, and a dash of flaky sea salt.

What to Serve With a Tomato Tart

Serve your tomato tart as a light lunch with a simple green salad, or serve it along with deviled eggs, chicken or tuna salad on lettuce leaves, a cucumber salad, or a cup of soup.

Recipe Tips

  • Ensure a crisp bottom crust by partially baking the puff pastry and salting the tomatoes to remove excess juices.
  • If the cream cheese mixture is too thick to spread, mix in a teaspoon or two of cream or milk.
  • This recipe used a 17.3-ounce package of puff pastry. Depending on the brand of puff pastry you choose, you may need to adjust the ingredients up or down slightly.
  • Follow the instructions on your puff pastry package for defrosting. Some brands call for 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature while others require 2 to 3 hours in the refrigerator.

“Pair this versatile tomato tart with a fresh green salad to create a vegetarian lunch or bake and slice into squares for a beautiful appetizer for your next party. The cream cheese, parmesan, herb, and garlic toppings are so full of flavor and perfect with the flaky pastry and juicy tomatoes”. —Joan Velush

Tomato Tart Puff Pastry A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened

  • 6 tablespoons grated Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese, or parmesan, divided, plus more for garnish, if desired

  • 1 large clove garlic, mashed to make a paste

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt, or to taste, more for the tomatoes

  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds slicing tomatoes (3 or 4 tomatoes)

  • 1 sheet (approximately 8 1/2 ounces) puff pastry, thawed following package instructions

  • All-purpose flour, for rolling

  • 1 dash coarsely ground black pepper

  • 1 large egg

  • Balsamic reduction, optional

  • Flaky sea salt, optional

  • Fresh basil leaves, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 400 F.

    Ingredients to make a tomato tart with puff pastry

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  2. In a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, 4 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano, garlic, basil, parsley, lemon zest, and salt. Mix with a fork until well combined. Taste and adjust the seasonings as desired. Set aside.

    A bowl of combined cream cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano, garlic, basil, parsley, lemon zest, and salt

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  3. Slice the tomatoes 1/4-inch thick and arrange them on a double layer of paper towels. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Place another layer of paper towels on top of the tomatoes and let them stand at room temperature while you prepare the crust.

    A plate of sliced tomatoes covered in paper towels

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  4. Place the sheet of puff pastry on a large sheet of parchment paper on the work surface. It should be defrosted enough to roll but still cold. Sprinkle the pastry evenly with flour and place another sheet of parchment paper on top. Roll the pastry out to an approximately 11 x 13-inch rectangle.

    A large, rectangular sheet of puff pastry on parchment paper

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  5. Leaving the puff pastry on the bottom sheet of parchment paper, slide it onto a large baking sheet. Leaving a 3/4-inch edge, prick the center of the pastry all over with the tines of a fork.

    A rectangular piece of puff pastry on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet covered with fork prick marks

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  6. Fold the 3/4-inch edge over to form the crust edge, then lightly tap it with a fork so it's even all around. Place the crust in the fridge for about 10 minutes to chill.

    A rectangular piece of puff pastry on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, with fork prick marks and a folded crust edge all around

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  7. Bake the chilled crust for 10 minutes. Remove the partially baked crust to a rack to cool completely. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 F.

    A partially baked puff pastry crust on a cooling rack

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  8. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cooled par-baked crust.

    A partially baked puff pastry crust covered in the seasoned cream cheese mixture

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  9. Blot the tomatoes again and arrange them over the cream cheese layer, overlapping slightly as needed. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and sprinkle lightly with black pepper.

    A partially baked puff pastry crust topped with cream cheese mixture and sliced tomatoes, topped with cheese and black pepper

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  10. Beat the egg with 2 teaspoons of cold water. Brush the egg mixture lightly over the border of the tart.

    A partially baked puff pastry crust with an egg washed crust border

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  11. Return the tart to the oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the border is golden brown.

    A fully baked puff pastry tomato tart

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

  12. If desired, garnish with more grated cheese, a drizzle of balsamic reduction, flaky sea salt, and fresh basil just before serving.

    A tomato puff pastry tart topped with fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, grated cheese, salt and pepper

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

How to Store Leftover Tomato Tart

  • Put leftover tomato tart in a covered container or wrap slices in foil. Refrigerate the tart for up to 3 days. If layering slices, separate them with sheets of wax paper or parchment paper.
  • To reheat, place the tomato tart on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Reheat the tart in a 400 F oven for about 10 minutes or until it is hot.
  • Freezing is not recommended for the tomato tart, as the juicy tomatoes and cream cheese leave the pastry soggy when defrosted.

Recipe Variations

  • If you're short on time, replace the cream cheese spread mixture with a tub (6 to 7 ounces) of spreadable herb and garlic cheese (such as Boursin) or herbed goat cheese.
  • Instead of red tomatoes, add a yellow tomato to the mix or use a combination of colorful heirloom tomatoes.
  • If your tomatoes are very large, add a few sliced cherry tomatoes or small Campari tomatoes to the tart to fill in gaps.
  • Swap out the fresh chopped basil with freshly chopped oregano leaves, or use a combination of the two herbs.
  • Add a sprinkle of crushed red chile flakes as a garnish if you like a little heat.

Is A Tomato Tart Served Hot or Cold?

The tomato tart is best enjoyed hot while the puff pastry is flaky and crisp, but it is also delicious warm, at room temperature, or cold, straight from the fridge.

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