Tomato tarts with preserved lemon relish
Super-easy and super-looking! Tomatoes are at their flavoursome best now, especially those allowed to ripen on the vine before picking. To keep things simple, I’ve used a ready-made, all- butter puff pastry and red cherry tomatoes, but you could experiment with different-coloured tomatoes – yellow, orange, black – whatever you can find. Serve with a green salad and new potatoes.
Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 25 minutes
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
2 large echalion/banana shallots, finely chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, plus extra to garnish
320g/111/4oz pack all-butter, ready-rolled puff pastry, chilled
140g/5oz vine cherry tomatoes, halved (save the vine stalk for adding to sauces and stews)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preserved lemon relish
4 preserved lemons from a jar, drained, flesh scooped out and discarded, and skin finely chopped
4 tsp apple cider vinegar
2–4 tsp runny honey
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
40g/11/2oz/1/3 cup unsalted roasted shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
Photography: Haarala Hamilton
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Line 2 baking sheets with baking paper.
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the shallots and fry for 8 minutes, until softened but not coloured – reduce the heat slightly if they start to brown. Stir in the thyme at the end of cooking.
Remove the pastry from the refrigerator, unroll the sheet and divide into 6 pieces. Score a border, about 1cm/1/2in from the edge, around each piece and prick the base of each one a few times with a fork. Arrange the pastry bases on the lined baking sheets. Spoon on the onions, then top with the tomatoes, arranging them in lines cut-side down. Lightly brush the tomatoes and pastry edges with olive oil and season the tops with salt and pepper. Bake for 20–25 minutes, until the pastry is cooked and golden.
Meanwhile, mix together the skin of the preserved lemons, cider vinegar and honey with the olive oil until combined. Taste and add more honey if you feel it needs to be sweeter. Just before serving, add the pistachios so they keep their crunch.
Scatter a little extra thyme over the tarts before serving with the relish.