Veraison occurs when the grapes turn from green to red. It is the beginning of ripening. About the time that the grapes seriously start to ripen, my tomatoes are threatening to overwhelm me and I scold myself that once again, I have planted way too many! (don’t worry; I can a lot) The summer is also that time of year when we entertain a lot…friends from near and far and like just about every other winery, we host those wonderful folks who have won our donated auction lots…anywhere from the Sun Valley Center for the Arts to the Naples Wine Auction and our local auctions like the Napa Valley Opera House. Today Freddy and I are hosting a morning of tennis on our court and tennis at our house. The menu: Roasted Salmon topped with a salad of cherry tomatoes and garden herbs, Corn Salad, Zuccaghetti, Heirloom Tomato Tart (this is where all those tomatoes come in) and for dessert,my Petaluma Peach Tart. Most of the recipes are on food52, dymnyno. But here is my favorite tomato tart that I start making as soon as the tomatoes start rolling in. Tennis, anyone?
Makes one 11 inch tart
. 3/1/2 pounds heirloom tomatoes
. 1 cup packed basil, plus extra leaves for the garnish
. 2 tablespoons tarragon leaves
. 1 cup low fat ricotta
. 1/2 cup parmesan, grated
. 2 large eggs
. 8 ounces mozzarella, grated or sliced
. 1 tablespoon heavy cream
. 3 tablespoons olive oil
. tart crust, make your favorite, enough for an 11 inch tart
1. Cut the tomatoes into 1/2 inch slices
2. Sprinkle the slices with salt and leave to drain in a colander over a bowl for about 30 minutes.
3. In a food processor or blender, put the basil,tarragon, ricotta, eggs, mozzarella, cream and parmesan and blend until smooth(it will look like guacamole.
4. Blind bake the crust for about 10 minutes in a tart pan with a removable bottom. Cool.
5. To assemble: Start with a layer of the cheese mixture and spread a thin layer on the bottom of the tart crust.
6. Next arrange a layer of tomatoes, then a layer of mixture, then tomatoes, ending with a top layer of tomatoes.
7. Drizzle the top with a little olive oil.
8. Bake in a 350 degree oven until the mixture is set and cooked, about 40 minutes.
9. Cool and garnish with basil.