I am a veggie addict! I know I post how much I love desserts, but my love for veggies is almost, almost, equivalent to my love for sweets. I eat veggies throughout the day, and with every meal. I think I love basically every vegetable out there…yup…can’t think of one I don’t like right now. Is okra a vegetable? I don’t really like okra. It’s sticky, and kind of weird. Whoever wants to make me some good okra, I will take you up on your offer.
Since my husband and I decided to cut meat out for the month of January, it has really challenged me to come up with some fun and interesting ways to make veggies in a way that he will eat them. I can simply sauté or roast any vegetable and have it with rice or quinoa, and be completely content with life. My husband actually likes simple rice and veggies as well, but after awhile it can become boring. I also love things that I can make ahead and have in the fridge for a quick lunch or snack. My latest veggie creation, Roasted Tomato and Zucchini Tart with Burrata and Basil, does just that. It is good warm or cold, and you can use any cheese you like. I used burrata, because that is what I had around, but you can use mozzarella, goat cheese, or anything you like.
For the crust on this tart, I decided on using cornmeal, because it has a great crunch. It also adds a fresh corn flavor that brightens up the tart that you wouldn’t get from a plain flour crust. Tarts sound fancy, but basically it is like a pie crust, but easier. It is a crumbly mixture that you don’t have to roll out. You pour it on the baking dish and press it in with your fingers. Boom! Done! I have to tell you, on Thanksgiving I made 8 pies…8…Don’t do that. I was actually really excited to test out some fun recipes, but I will tell you, it made me start to hate rolling out pie crust. I found that not only did I like the flavor of the pies that had crumbly crusts, but it also made me not want to rip my hair out of my head. I’m pretty sure that next year, I won’t make as many pies, but also, that I will make more pies with crumbly crust…and have more hair.
Tips for perfect Roasted Tomato and Zucchini Tart with Burrata and Basil
*Make sure you don’t overcook the veggies! Cook until they are softened, but not mushy.
*Allow the veggies to cool enough so that you can use your fingers. I was impatient and tried to use pinchers, and it just didn’t work the same.
*You can add other veggies if you like!
*If planning on placing in the fridge, make sure to allow the tart to cool completely first, then cover with foil, and refrigerate (I like eating this tart cold!)
- 2 cups yellow cornmeal
- ⅔ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4-5 tablespoons water
- 5-6 medium size tomatoes, cut into this slices
- 2 zucchini, cut into thin slices, I like using a mandoline)
- 2 large shallots, thinly sliced
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon oregano
- ¼ cup (or more if you like) freshly grated parmesan
- 4 oz (or more if you like) fresh burrata
- fresh basil for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
- Place the cornmeal, flour, and salt in the food processor and blend together
- Place in the cold butter and pulse until the butter is broken up into the mixture into about pea sized pieces
- With the processor on, add in the olive oil and water
- Process until the mixture comes together and it able to stick together when you squeeze it, careful not to over-mix
- Pour into a 9 inch tart pan and use your hands to press it into the pan
- Cover the center with aluminum foil and fill with uncooked rice or uncooked beans; this holds the center down while the crust bakes
- Bake for 10 minutes
- Remove the foil and beans/rice, then bake for another 5-7 minutes
- Raise the temperature of the oven to 400 degrees
- Place the thinly sliced zucchini and tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and toss with olive oil and salt
- Make sure they are in an even layer, this may take a two or three baking sheets
- Bake for about 15 minutes
- Meanwhile, cook the shallots in a skillet over medium heat but warming a couple tablespoons of olive oil, then add in the shallots and a sprinkle of salt
- Once the shallots have started to soften, add in the dried herbs and cook for a little longer, then allow them to cool
- Once the zucchini and tomatoes come out of the oven and are cool enough to touch, start layering them in the prepared tart pan, starting with a layer zucchini (about half of the zucchini), a layer of shallots (half of the shallots), and a layer of tomatoes (half the tomatoes), and then 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese over that
- Then repeat with another layer of zucchini, shallots, tomatoes
- I like to add a few more slices of fresh tomatoes on the top to make sure the top is covered with tomatoes
- Then tear the burrata cheese with your hands and place small dollops of the cheese over the top layer of the veggies
- Top with the last of the parmesan cheese
- Bake at 350 degrees for about 25-30 minutes
- Allow to cool for about 15 minutes before removing the outside of the tart dish
- Serve with fresh basil torn over the top