Smoked mozzarella is a wonderful thing and something I’m relatively new to. My friends Tom and Dan invited us round their new house for dinner (this by the way, literally never happens). I’ve been friends with Tom for 18 years (gadzooks) and not once has he ever cooked me dinner… He gave me a Smint once but I’m pretty sure he bought that. Anyway, we prefer to drink our calories when we’re together but on this occasion, I agreed to let him feed me. So I opened my mouth and let one of my oldest and dearest friends shove in a bruschetta topped with smoked mozzarella.
“Good lord, what sweet heaven is that?” I splutter ‘attractively’ as Jamie grimaces.
“Smoked mozzarella babe” Tom says before turning on his heel to go and help Dan in the kitchen.
“Yeah but where did you get it?… Some poncey Italian deli in St Albans I’ll bet” I say more to Jamie and catch him stuffing a few slices in his mouth, minus the bruschetta.
“Err no, just Waitrose” Tom yells from the kitchen…
Now, as luck would have it, we recently moved house and guess what our local supermarket is? Yep, you’ve guessed it, WAITROSE! So I scampered home and decided to build an entire recipe around an entire ball of smoked mozzarella and here it is! I really must make it for Tom and Dan, maybe in another 18 years when it’s my turn to cook.
Smoked mozzarella & tomato tart
Serves 4 or 6 as a starter / Hands on time 15 / Total time 35 mins + cooling / V*
You’ll need: A 10 inch non-stick loose bottomed tart tin or large baking tray
300g mixed tomatoes, sliced
250g smoked mozzarella* or vegetarian mozzarella, sliced
320g ready roll puff pastry
Handful black olives
Handful fresh basil leaves
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbs extra virgin basil oil (I use Pomora)
*Most smoked mozzarella is made with animal rennet, so if vegetarian, use vegetarian mozzarella which is widely available.
1. Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400F/gas 6. Spray your baking tray/tart tin with spray oil and top with a layer of baking paper. Spray again with oil and put to one side.
2. Slice the tomatoes (halve the cherry tomatoes) and slice the cheese. Roll out your puff pastry and roughly stretch it over your tart case (you don’t need to be very neat about this, this tart isn’t supposed to look perfect). Layer the bottom of the tart with the smoked mozzarella, leaving a good inch around it for the crust. Top evenly with the tomatoes and season well with salt and pepper. Pull the edges of the tart in on itself, creating a kind of crust. Top with a handful of black olives and scattering of fresh basil leaves.
3. Bake in the oven for 20-25 mins until golden brown. Leave the tart to cool for 10-15 minutes before topping with more fresh basil and a good drizzle basil oil. Serve with dressed salad leaves.
If you’ve had a go at making my tart or any of my other recipes, I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale firstname.lastname@example.org