Sunday, 11 June 2017

Savoury Tomato Jam and Goat Cheese Tart






A combination of me buying tomatoes when there were already tomatoes at home, and the memory of the appetizer I had at my cousin's wedding in Ireland in May are responsible for this tart. I was quite happy with the way it turned out, but it was nothing like the one we had at the wedding!

Making a tomato jam is an easy and very tasty way to use up extra, or soft tomatoes. The riper they are, the sweeter they will be, which means less added sugar...always a good thing in my opinion.

I took the opportunity to use up some ricotta cheese and tomato paste that were in the fridge too.

To start off, make a roasted garlic shortbread crust , following the recipe in the post Roast Garlic Shortbread Quiche Crust.

While the tart shell is in the fridge chilling, make the tomato jam.


In a deep sided pot, combine:

3 cups roughly chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup diced onion
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
pinch of chili flakes
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt





 Add:

1 cup of water








Turn the heat on to high, and bring it to a boil. When it starts to boil, turn the heat down, and simmer until the liquid starts to evaporate and the mixture begins to thicken.





Add:

2 or 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary









Continue to cook, stirring often, and keeping a close eye on the jam, as it can scorch very quickly at this point!





Cook until all of the liquid has evaporated, and the mixture is sticky and jammy.

When it starts to catch on the bottom of the pan, as shown, remove from the heat.







Discard the rosemary sprigs, and spread the hot jam onto a plate to cool.

When it is cool enough to taste, do so and adjust the seasoning. I added 1/2 teaspoon of honey to mine, as it was a bit too acidic.





Heat the oven to 350F and if you haven't yet baked the chilled tart shell, do so now.






Spread the tomato jam evenly over the bottom of the baked and cooled tart shell.







To make the goat cheese filling, whisk the following together:

4 ounces ricotta cheese
4 ounces soft goat cheese, room temperature
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 egg





Carefully spread the goat cheese filling over the tomato jam.









Place the tart onto a baking sheet, and bake at 350F until the goat cheese filling is puffed, slightly golden and set in the middle.

Remove from the oven and leave to rest for 5 - 10 minutes before removing it from the tart shell and cutting.





I served the warm tart with a spinach, strawberry and toasted pumpkin seed salad, using a simple Balsamic vinaigrette.




  • Any type of tomatoes can be used, the riper and softer the better....roma, grape, cherry, heirloom, yellow or red.
  • Tomatoes naturally contain sugar, and the sweetness increases as they ripen. This being said, some varieties are sweeter than others...this is the reason that I tasted and adjusted the tomato jam after cooking. My tomatoes were more acidic so I added some honey; add more vinegar if the jam is too sweet for your liking. A lot of this is personal taste.
  • There is no need to peel the tomatoes; the skin contains a lot of goodness and flavour, and breaks down enough during cooking to give the jam a chunky texture. I did remove the stem / core before chopping the tomatoes. 
  • The hot jam can be pressed through a sieve after cooking if you would prefer a smooth jam.
  • Red onion can be used instead of white.
  • The rosemary can be omitted during cooking, and chopped fresh rosemary stirred in at the end...this will give a bright, fresh rosemary taste. I wanted the rosemary to be in the background, that is why I infused it and removed it.
  • Feel free to add garlic, or other herbs and spices...why not try fennel or thyme?
  • I chose balsamic vinegar as it is a natural with fresh tomatoes; use apple cider or red wine vinegar instead.
  • Serve the jam as an accompaniment to grilled or roasted meats or fish.
  • I considered using all goat cheese for the filling, but felt it might be too overwhelming; I also had some open ricotta cheese to use.

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