In the Kitchen: Caramelised Onion and Tomato Tart

Tomato tart v2

We’re in the midst of summer now in NZ and the tomatoes in my garden are growing and multiplying like crazy.

Hovi and I planted six tomato plants in our postage stamp size of a garden earlier this spring along with four capsicum plants and a variety of herbs, most of which didn’t stick around.

Along with some already established rhubarb that really is a bit of weed (but who can resist a rhubarb pie in winter?), we already had a massive rosemary bush that we keep cutting back but it loves our little sunny garden and keeps on giving. Add to that a massive amount of mint which has stealthily infiltrated other parts of the garden and even the footpath.

With a massive bowl of tomatoes to consume recently, there was only so many I could throw in a salad or eat on toast. And I couldn’t bear to see any wasted. So it was up to me to stand around in a hot kitchen and whip up some tomato treats.

Hence a very simple and delicious tomato tart that literally smells like summer. And I had to invite some rosemary to the party because frankly what could be a better pairing? Oh, and add to that some caramelised red onion because I love the tang with the tomato sweetness.

I could have bought some pre-made pastry but as a novice pastry maker I really want to keep practicing but it can be pretty hit and miss (especially in a hot kitchen mid summer).

I found this very simple but herby delicious rosemary pastry recipe from ‘I Talk to food’ so make that first and while it’s in the fridge chilling out for an hour or so make the filling below.

Filling: Caramelised red onion
1x large red onion chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
50 g butter (full fat version please)
1 tsp sugar
A swig of balsamic vinegar

Add the butter and oil to a frying pan until melted. Add the onion and cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes stirring regularly. Add the sugar and balsamic vinegar and cook for another minute or so. Put aside.

Now’s the time to pre-heat the oven to fan bake at 180 degrees.

Filling: Tomatoes
25 g butter
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
5x large tomatoes chopped into large chunks (it doesn’t matter what kind only that they’re fresh and taste good.)
1 tsp sugar
1x garlic clove finely chopped
Sprig of thyme


Using the same frying pan as the onion, heat the pan until hot then add the butter and oil. Add the sugar and garlic, then the tomatoes cut side down. Add the sprig of thyme and cook for a minute or two. Remove from the heat and add the onions to the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper.

Putting it all together
Take the chilled pastry from the fridge and roll out so that it’s larger than your pie dish – I used a 23cm pie dish and I easily had left over pastry so go larger if you like. Try and roll the pastry evenly so it’s not too thick and not too thin. I’m not ashamed to say my rolling skills need some work so I did perform some retrospective squishing of pastry in the pie dish to make the pastry even all over.

Add the tomatoes and onion to the dish and spread evenly around. Keep the tomatoes cut side down. Fan bake for approx 45 minutes until the pastry is golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove the tart from the dish by placing the dish on top of a can. You can eat the tart hot or cold.

The smell of tomatoes throughout the house is pretty seductive so give it a go!



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