Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Cherry Tomato Mini Tarts

Oh my gosh, how did it get to be the second week of September already?  The last time I posted was July 20!  In the past few weeks my husband and I have tried to fit in as many summer activities as we could with family and friends.

August was a beautiful, fun, food-filled month and it flew by far too quickly. The weather here was finally gorgeous and we enjoyed many al fresco dinners on the patio. One of our daughters stayed overnight with with us twice and had dinner with us every single night for one of those weeks while her boyfriend and his father went on their annual fishing trip to Canada.  We made dinners together and had a great time hosting our other daughter and our grandsons.  We also scheduled other individual play dates with our grandsons, held our last Family Swim of the summer, and we played golf with some great friends with dinners here afterward. The weather on every date scheduled was perfection.  I was grateful to unplug and enjoy that beautiful month and have some great memories!

During that warm, sunny month of August, my tomatoes finally started ripening and it's been a bountiful harvest ever since!  One of my favorite new recipes I made with my cherry tomato harvest were these cherry tomato mini tarts.  They make a delicious appetizer and my husband and I have also eaten them for dinner.  Filled with tomatoes and lots of cheese, they are oh, so good and, who doesn't love puff pastry?!

They come together quickly and take less than 30 minutes to bake so you have have these ready in no time at all.  A little drizzle of aged balsamic vinegar and some chopped, fresh basil, are my favorite additions. I hope you try these before tomato season is over, they are delightful!

During August, my dahlias also started to bloom and, right now, they are the highlight of the garden and are providing me with some beautiful bouquets.

The begonias are so lush right now also that it's hard to believe fall is just two weeks away!  I'll enjoy the last hurrah in the garden and hope to harvest tomatoes as long as I possibly can :)  We actually have some summery weather in the forecast for the next few days.  Fingers crossed for a beautiful fall!  

Now, I'm glad to be back and sharing this tasty recipe with you and hope to get caught up with the rest of my blogging friends soon!

Cherry Tomato Mini Tarts

Makes 18 tarts but can easily be halved to make 9 using 1 sheet of puff pastry.

1 (17.3-oz.) pkg. frozen puff pastry sheets, partially thawed
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
Small pinch of red pepper flakes
10 ounce sharp Cheddar cheese, finely shredded (2 1/2 cups)
4 ounces finely grated Parmesan cheese
11 ounces multicolored cherry tomatoes (about 3 cups), halved and allowed to drain for 30 minutes on paper toweling


2 tablespoons torn fresh basil
Aged Balsamic

Preheat oven to 400°F. Gently unfold both pastry sheets and roll out to a 12 x 12 inch (approx) square. Spread 1/8 cup mayonnaise evenly on each pastry sheet; sprinkle each with 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper and small pinch of red pepper flakes.

Cut each pastry sheet into thirds both from the top and side making 9 (4 x 4 inch) squares. Gently press squares into 2 lightly greased muffin pans. Divide cheeses and tomatoes among tarts, alternating tomatoes/cheese/tomatoes/cheese.

Bake in preheated oven until pastry is golden brown, about 20-25 minutes until tops are browned and filling is bubbly. Let cool in pans on a wire rack 5 minutes.

Serve immediately topped with torn fresh basil and drizzle with aged balsamic.

Do ahead tips:  Prepare the muffin pans with the puff pastry ahead of time and keep covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator until ready to fill.  Measure and mix the cheeses and keep covered in the refrigerator.  An hour ahead, the cherry tomatoes can be cut and placed on a plate with paper toweling under and over them and covered with plastic wrap until ready to assemble.  

Adapted, with my changes, from Southern Living