There comes a point in the summer when the overabundance of vegetables is too much to handle, and friends, neighbors, and anyone else is saying, “here, take a few tomatoes and a few zucchini!”
And with it comes this feeling of, “it’s still tomato season!” and at the same time, the “what am I going to do with all of these tomatoes?” So this recipe is a solution to both the tomato and zucchini crisis–and it also helps to get rid of any leftover pie dough you have in the freezer. Yeah, remember that disc wrapped in plastic wrap that’s been there for two weeks?
And if there’s no pie dough in the freezer, don’t fret. I have the best pie dough recipe that is super versatile, can be used for sweet or savory fillings, and keeps in the freezer for a few good weeks.
This heirloom tomato, zucchini and goat cheese crostata is a knock out. It’s good with fried eggs for breakfast, or served with a big salad for dinner. You can eat it with your hands or with a fork and a knife. You can take it to the beach, eat it hot, eat it cold or eat it all in one sitting. Really, there’s no wrong way to eat it.
AND people are SUPER impressed by a savory crostata with beautiful fillings and flavors. They’ll ask, “how is the crust not soggy?” and “how’d you get the crust so flaky and the tomatoes to stay so juicy?” You’ll say, “Oh, it’s really so easy, it looks fancy but anyone could do it.” You’ll make new friends and keep old, all while looking like an absolute pro.
So if you’re looking for something to take to your labor day picnic, this is it. Or if you don’t know what to do with all of those tomatoes and zucchini, this crostata is your answer. Enjoy!
Heirloom Tomato, Zucchini, and Goat Cheese Crostata
Makes 1 crostata, but two crusts (save one for later, or for dessert)
For the Filling
1/2 cup (4 oz) of herbed or plain goat cheese
1 bunch basil (save half for after the crostata is baked)
1 large heirloom tomato
1 lg or two small zucchini
2-4 cloves of garlic (my organic garlic is super mild, so I used 4 cloves, sliced thin)
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375
For the goat cheese filling, combine goat cheese, egg, and chopped basil. Mix to combine and set aside.
Slice garlic thin. Set aside.
Slice the zucchini into thin rounds, around 1/8 of an inch thick. Slice the large heirloom tomato into 1/2 inch slices.
After dough is rolled out, spread goat cheese mixture onto the dough, leaving one inch around the border. Sprinkle garlic on top of the goat cheese. Layer zucchini in a spiral on top of the garlic and goat cheese, all the way until the center. Drizzle with olive oil. Salt and pepper generously.
Place tomatoes on top of the zucchini making sure to leave the border clear. Salt and pepper the tomatoes generously.
Crimp the dough around the vegetables in the center.
Bake for around an hour, checking the crostata at 45 minutes. When it’s golden brown, remove from the oven and sprinkle with whole basil leaves. Let cool for 10 minutes on the pan, and transfer to cooling rack.
Slice with a sharp knife and enjoy while it’s still warm.
For the All Butter Crust (video here)
Yields 2 crusts, one top, one bottom.
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour (or all purpose if you don’t have whole wheat)
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 sticks of cold unsalted butter
10 tbsp ice water (or a little more)
Combine flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Cut cold butter into 1/2 chunks and add to the flour mixture. It’s important the the butter is cold. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour until butter is in a little bigger than pea size chunks.
Slowly add ice water one tablespoon at time. Mix gently with hands or a rubber spatula until dough starts to form. Pat dough together and divide into two disks. Wrap in plastic wrap and let dough chill for at least one hour.
When rolling out the dough, be sure to flour the surface and rotate the dough after each roll. Once the dough is around 1/4 inch thick, roll onto the pin and fold onto the pie sheet pan.
Add filling and crimp edges. Brush with heavy cream or egg yolk for shine. Or leave bare for a rustic look. Bake until golden brown.