This sun-dried tomato and pesto tart is something you can put together in no time at all using a few store cupboard ingredients. I like to have puff pastry in the freezer (ready made – I’m not that organized!). It is so easy to pop it in the fridge to defrost, ready to top a pie, turn into a dessert or make something quick and tasty for lunch. My fiance is a sun-dried tomato fiend so we almost always have a jar lurking in the fridge!
I first tried a variation of this recipe whilst on holiday in France, we enjoyed dinner in a rustic restaurant on a river, and I ordered the simple but delicious tomato and goats cheese tart as a starter. It arrived as a lovely big slab of golden puff pastry, with ripe red warm tomatoes lining the center, and covered in a scattering of herbs and melted goats cheese. Tasty and simple to make!
I experimented with a number of versions, and this sun-dried tomato and pesto tart is definitely one of my favourites. The slightly salty texture of the pesto, with the oozy soft creamy mozzarella and the sharper sun-dried tomatoes on golden pastry, topped with fresh basil leaves and a few crunchy toasted pine nuts is heavenly!
I cut my pastry into roughly A5 sized rectangles, scoring an inner rectangle into each. This allows the edges to rise neatly around the outside of the chosen filling. Pricking the inner rectangle with a fork prevents it from rising with the edges. I find placing the tart onto a pre-heated tray helps the base to cook through, preventing it from getting a soggy bottom.
If you liked this you may also like: Sweet potato wedges
- 1 Teaspoon of Green Pesto
- Puff pastry (I used ready made and pre rolled)
- 2 -3 pieces of sun-dried tomatoes, cut into strips
- About a quarter of a mozzarella ball, cut or torn into small strips
- Optional, To Garnish: Handful of Pine Nuts, A few fresh Basil leaves
- Heat the oven to 200'C and place a flat baking tray in to heat up.
- If your sun-dried tomatoes are in oil, scoop them out onto a piece of kitchen roll to remove.
- Cut a rectangle about the size of an A5 piece of paper out of the puff pastry, and place on a piece of baking paper about twice the size (this makes it easier to lift).
- Gently cut another inner rectangle into the pastry, about 1cm from the edge - be careful not to cut right down to the base.
- Prick the inner rectangle all over with a fork.
- Cover the inner rectangle with pesto and then with the strips of mozzarella and sun-dried tomatoes.
- Remove the hot tray from the oven, and carefully lift the tart onto it.
- Place in the middle of the oven and cook for 15 minutes or until the outer pastry is well risen and golden.
- Whilst in the oven, in a small frying pan gently toast a handful of pine nuts over a medium heat.
- Once the tart is cooked, remove from the oven and scatter the fresh basil leaves and toasted pine nuts over the top.
- Add a good grind of black pepper and enjoy!