Tomato, mozzarella and basil tarts
- July 2005
- Serves 4
- Takes 55 minutes to make
This easy recipe for tomato, mozzarella and basil tarts results in a soft, cheesy tomato filling and crispy, flaky pastry base with the beautiful taste of the basil herb.
- Vegetarian recipes
- 200g shortcrust pastry (see recipe)
- 4 tsp green pesto
- 8-12 slices mozzarella
- 4 slices beef tomato
- Few slivers finely sliced garlic
- Few fresh small basil leaves
- 1 tsp olive oil
- On a sheet of baking paper, roll out the pastry until it is 3mm thick. Put the tartlet tin on top and use a knife to cut out 4 circles of pastry about 3cm wider than the tin.
- Carefully lift up the pastry rounds and put them into each tin. Ease it into the corners, then use your finger to gently press the pastry into the edges. Roll a rolling pin over the top of the tartlet tin to neaten and trim off the edges, then prick the base with a fork – this will stop air bubbles forming during baking.
- To make sure the pastry case is crisp, you have to part-bake it before it is filled. (See our how-to video below) Put a square of baking paper onto the pastry in each tin, then tip in some baking beans, dried chickpeas or dry rice to weigh down the paper.
- Put the tartlet tins on a baking tray and chill for 15 minutes (this will make sure the pastry doesn’t shrink as it cooks). Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan200°C/ gas 7. Bake the tartlets for 10-15 minutes until the pastry is pale-golden.
- Lift the tray out of the oven, carefully remove the paper and beans, and set the tartlet cases aside to cool. Leave the oven on.
- Spread 1 tsp pesto into each pastry tartlet cases, then arrange 2-3 mozzarella pieces and 1 slice tomato on top. Add garlic, some salt and ground black pepper, then finish with 2-3 basil leaves and a drizzle of olive oil.
- Return the tartlet cases to the baking tray and bake for 10 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.
- Remove the tartlets from the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes. Remove the tarts from the tins onto a serving plate, then eat while warm.
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