After my delayed start in selecting June’s featured flavor (summer squash) and my equally delayed started in blogging anything this month, I too was about to call the whole thing off. In times like these where I have ideas I want to share but then can’t seem to do so in the way in which I envision, I am always tempted to scrap the whole thing. But then I seem to remember something popular that got off to a weird start (remember how in the first season of Sex & The City, Carrie spoke directly to the audience?), and I realize the best way to make something better is to simply carry on.
If you saw the Instagram photo I tweeted out yesterday, you probably had a good idea of the flavor to come this month: tomatoes. For a blog that started out with the intention to share sweet baked treats, I certainly would not have guessed two vegetables (or one vegetable and for all intents and purposes a fruit that masquerades in most dishes as a vegetable) would start off the monthly featured flavors.
Like coconut, I recognize tomatoes polarize eaters. Some love them, some hate them, and no one seems to fall in the middle. I happen to love them. For those of you that fall in the latter camp, just ignore me for a few posts this month.
It is tough for me to want to cook or bake tomatoes they are so perfectly delicious as they come, not to mention when it is hot outside. There is just nothing like biting into a ripe, juicy tomato for a burst of summer flavor. But I have found enough tomato recipes that have intrigued me enough to try something new.
First up is a tomato galette with rosemary crust. I like to think of this galette as a fancy, yet very easy to make, variation on pizza. I could eat pizza nearly every day, but it is still nice to eat something pizza-like that is not actually pizza. I made the small, 8-inch rounds suggested in the recipe, and they were the perfect individual serving size for a full lunch. Though I see no reason why a slice of tomato galette could not also be served as an appetizer.
Because the original recipe came from a vegan cookbook, it included a ricotta cheese substitute made from pine nuts. I am trying to eat a more plant-based diet, but I find giving up eggs and cheese is simply something I do not want to do at this time. So I opted to top my galettes with a puree of ricotta cheese (find out how to make homemade ricotta cheese here), olive oil and basil. In the future, I’ll likely top the tomato galettes with a few balls of mozzarella. Enjoy!
- 2½ cups flour (I used 1¼ cups all-purpose and 1¼ cups white whole wheat)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup shortening
- ½ cup ice water
- olive oil, for brushing
- 2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
- Whisk together the flour, sugar, rosemary, and salt.
- Use a pastry cutter to cut the shortening into the flour mixture until is has a sandy, crumbly consistency.
- Add the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough just holds together. You may not need to use all of the water; I used only 3 tablespoons.
- Form the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 10 minutes.
- Once chilled, unwrap the dough and roll out to ⅛ inch thickness. The dough rolls out best when placed between a top and bottom layer of very lightly floured parchment paper.
- Cut the dough into circles (using a plate or round cake pan as a guide); you should have enough dough for three, 8-inch circles.
- Return the circles of dough to the refrigerator for another 10 minutes.
- Once chilled, brush the dough with olive oil.
- Layer the tomatoes, slightly overlapping, along the dough circles. Leave a 1-inch border for the crust.
- Fold the border over the edges of the tomatoes, and again, return to the refrigerator, this time for 15 minutes.
- Place the unbaked galettes on parchment-lined baking sheets.
- Brush the edges of the dough with olive oil.
- Bake at 375 degrees until the tomatoes look shriveled and the crust looks slightly browned, about 30-35 minutes.
- Allow the galettes to cool for at least five minutes before serving. The galettes are best served warm.