by Sarah Steimer
For the crust:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup fine cornmeal
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (1 stick plus 2 tablespoon) cut into pieces
- 1/2 cup plus grated sharp Cheddar cheese
Briefly pulse together the flour, cornmeal and salt in a food processor. Add the butter and cheese and pulse until the mixture forms chickpea-size pieces.
Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing occasionally, until the mixture is moist enough to hold together. Do not add too much water!
Form the dough into a ball and cover with saran wrap, flattening into a disk. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
For the filling:
- 1 1/2 pounds different-colored tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick (or halved if using cherry or grape tomatoes)
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus a pinch
- 2 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 bunch fresh thyme springs (about 5-6 springs), plus 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
- 3/4 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese (may use a little less, depending on how cheesy you’re trying to get)
- pepper, to taste
- 1 egg
Line a cooling rack or baking sheet with a double layer of paper towels. Spread the tomato slices in a single layer and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Let sit for at least 1 hour or up to 3 hours.
Combine vinegar, honey and thyme springs in a skillet over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Let simmer for 2 minutes then transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the skilled and add olive oil and garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until garlic is golden. Remove garlic and finely chop; reserve garlic oil.
Working on a lightly floured surface, roll the crust out to about 1/4-inch thickness. Place on a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Return the crust and pan to the refrigerator for another 20 minutes.
Preheat over to 425 degrees.
Pat the tomatoes dry with paper towels (don’t need to overdo it, just a quick pat). Brush the tomatoes with the honey mixture, reserving the thyme springs.
Remove the crust from the refrigerator and distribute the cheese, garlic and half the chopped thyme over the crust, leaving a 2- to 3-inch border. Add pepper to taste. Layer the tomatoes in an overlapping patter, maintaining the border. Drizzle the tomatoes with the garlic oil and sprinkle with the remaining thyme leaves.
Fold the crust up around the tomatoes, creating a border. Place the reserved thyme leaves in the center.
Whisk together the egg and 1 teaspoon of water in a small bowl. Brush the eggs walk over the crust and sprinkle with salt.
Bake for 35 minutes until the crostata crust is a deep golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Serves 4-6 as a main dish or 6-8 as a side.
Recipe adapted from: The New York Times