Surely there’s a tomato tart in your future this week. Karen Schneider / For The Forecaster

Karen Schneider cooks and writes in the village of Cundy’s Harbor. You can reach her at or 504-0545.

Tomatoes. We either don’t have enough or we have too many. Let me help you out with a couple yummy recipes.

This rich, herby tart is lovely served warm or at room temperature, served with a big green salad, or gobbled down at breakfast with eggs and hash browns.

My best advice is to use the most beautiful ripe tomatoes of all shapes, colors and sizes you can find. Then allow lots of time (a couple hours) for the slices to drain and dry.

The amounts of herbs listed in the recipe are for stirring into the cheese mixture, but you’ll want extra bits to sprinkle over the top when the tart comes out of the oven, as well as a generous shake of flaky salt and more pepper.

If you prefer, make a round galette instead of the rectangular tart. You can also cut the puff pastry into four squares to make individual servings.

Now I must ask you, have you ever eaten BLT Salad? This pasta salad is always welcome at any gathering. If you’re making it in advance, wait until just before serving to stir in the greens or serve the pasta salad on a bed of greens if you like.


Start with a “short” pasta such as fusilli, gemelli, cavatappi, rotelle, rotini, penne or farfalle. And use good quality, thick bacon. Please don’t scrimp.

As far as the dressing goes, feel free to flavor the mayo with something other than ranch dressing and lemon juice. Some of our family (namely me) like a bedazzlement of sriracha instead.

And I urge you to not use “light” or low-fat mayonnaise. Anything containing bacon deserves to be dressed with the real deal, don’t you agree? The greens in the salad and a brisk walk after the meal will cancel out the calories.

Tomato tart

1 1/2 to 2 pounds tomatoes, thinly sliced

1 cup ricotta cheese

1/4 cup plain goat cheese


Juice of half a lemon

Zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon fresh chives, snipped

1 tablespoon fresh basil, julienned

1 tablespoon fresh oregano

Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste


1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

1 egg

1 tablespoon water

Layer tomato slices in a colander, salting each layer as you go. Allow to drain for at least an hour or two, then pat dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out puff pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and create a 1-inch border around all four edges by rolling the pastry over once or twice.

In a small bowl, mix ricotta, goat cheese, lemon juice and zest, herbs, salt and pepper. Spread mixture inside the border of the puff pastry, then top with the tomato slices.


Whisk egg with 1 tablespoon water and brush it on the pastry edges.

Bake for 20 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. (Be sure to check the bottom.)

Remove from the oven and garnish with more fresh herbs. Add a sprinkle of flaky salt and pepper.

Yield: 4 servings

BLT salad

8 ounces bacon, chopped

3/4 cup mayonnaise


1/4 cup ranch dressing

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

12 ounces “short” pasta

1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced in half


1/3 cup red onion, diced

2 cups fresh spinach or arugula (packed), julienned

Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crispy, or roast in the oven in a parchment paper-lined baking pan at 375 degrees until crisp. Transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool. Once cooled, chop or crumble the bacon into small pieces.

While the bacon is cooking, prepare the dressing. In a small bowl, stir together mayonnaise, ranch dressing, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add pasta and cook according to package directions for al dente. Drain pasta in a colander, rinse it briefly with cool water, then let it drain well.

While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the vegetables.

Once the drained pasta has cooled, add it to a large bowl along with the bacon, tomatoes, onions, greens and dressing. Stir everything together until evenly combined and coated in dressing. Chill for at least 1 hour, then stir and add more mayonnaise if needed.

Yield: 8 servings

Comments are not available on this story.