Heirloom Tomato Pie
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ripe summer tomatoes between layers of Parmesan cheese, all packed into a flaky, pastry crust.
Author:
Serves: serves 12-15
Ingredients
For the Pastry:
  • ¼ cup warm water (115 degrees F)
  • 1 packed dry active yeast (usually about 2¼ teaspoons)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • ½ cup whole milk, room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, chilled and cubed
For the Pie:
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • ¾ pound Parmesan cheese, grated
  • ¼ sweet yellow onion or 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten (for the crust)
Instructions
For the Pastry:
  1. In a medium sized bowl, combine your warm water, yeast and 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar. Let them sit until the yeast is foaming, about 5 minutes. If your yeast doesn't foam, it's probably old and it's best to start over than to try to make this with old yeast. Better safe than sorry!
  2. Once the yeast is ready, add in your ½ cup whole milk, ¼ cup granulated sugar, egg and salt. Whisk until combined and set aside. In a large bowl, add in your flour and cubed and chilled butter. Cut the butter into the flour (you can use a pastry cutter, but I find that hands work best) until coarse crumbs form, but you will still have a few pieces of butter in there - that's fine!
  3. Add the wet mixture into the flour mixture and use a wooden spoon to combine until everything just comes together. Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and use your hands to pat it into a square. Use a flour rolling pin to roll it into a 9x13-inch rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds, like you're folding a letter to put into an envelope, then roll the dough out again and, again, fold it into your envelope thirds. Roll the dough out a third time, fold it into thirds again, and roll it out again into a 9x13-inch rectangle. Finally, fold the dough into thirds once more, but instead of rolling it out again, cut the dough in half, wrap each square in plastic wrap, and chill for a minimum of 2 hours or as long as overnight. You can also freeze this dough for up to 3 months.
For the Pie:
  1. When you're ready, roll out one of your halves of dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Place it in your pie dish and pat the edges into place (this is more of a pastry than a pie crust, so it won't hold any super decorative edges like a regular pie crust would. Place the crust in the freezer while you prep the tomatoes and cheese. You can save any pastry scraps to cut out and place on top of your pie, if you like.
  2. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Slice your tomatoes into about ½-inch slices, getting rid of any especially watery parts. Thinly slice your onion or shallot, and grate your Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle your tomatoes with the salt, pepper and crushed pepper flakes.
  3. Pull your crust from the freezer and sprinkle the bottom with about ¼ of your Parmesan cheese. Spread a layer of tomatoes out over the first layer of cheese, then sprinkle with a few slices of onion. Top with another ¼ of your cheese, then another layer of tomato, a sprinkle of onion, another ¼ of your cheese, and so on, saving a little cheese for the top to sprinkle over everything once you're done, then arrange your cubes of butter over the top of everything.
  4. If you like, you can cut out shapes or decoration with any pastry scraps - I cut out little flowers with mine, as you can see. Arrange those on the top of your pie, if you want, then brush the crust and any decoration with a little bit of beaten egg. Place the pie in the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes or so, until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling.
  5. Allow the pie to cool and set for at least 30 minutes, then slice and serve. This also keeps well covered and refrigerated overnight to serve for brunch or lunch the next day. This pairs well with a side of fried eggs.
Recipe by The Crepes of Wrath at http://www.thecrepesofwrath.com/2015/08/05/heirloom-tomato-pie/