Calling all Bacon Lovers, here’s a pie crust worthy of summer heirloom tomatoes. . .a Swoon-Worthy Heirloom Tomato Tart with a Bacon-Studded Crust!
Everything is better with bacon and that goes for a crust for a savory pie or tart too! I used a filling from a favorite tomato pie recipe that has a minimal amount of mayonnaise, along with a mixture of caramelized onion, shredded mozzarella and manchego cheeses, bread crumbs, and herbs. I made a tart instead of pie, since it cooks in half the time and it’s prettier and easier to serve, with the removable outer ring of the tart pan.
We enjoyed a mini version of this bacon-studded tomato tart at a restaurant in Charleston recently. I loved the addition of the crumbled bacon in the crust where the bacon flavor is distinct and not lost in the cheesy filling layer!
I took a short cut and started with refrigerated pie crust but you can use your favorite pastry/pie dough recipe for this tart.
My 11-inch tart pan is too large for a single pie crust, so I spliced 2 pie crusts together to roll out and fill the tart pan. Cook your bacon and set aside to cool, then chop it into small bacon bit-sized pieces. I used 4 pieces of bacon for plenty of flavor.
I scored the pie crust lightly with a knife, tracing the circumference of the tart pan, adding and allowing for the height of the sides of the pan, so I would know where to sprinkle the bacon bits. You don’t want any of that bacon scattered on your dough scraps and go to waste!
Use your rolling pin to roll and press the bacon bits, incorporating them into your crust. Trim off some the excess dough and roll your bacon-studded crust on your rolling pin to transfer it to your tart pan.
Place your pie crust into your tart pan, easing it in and down the sides of the pan.
Press your rolling pin over the top of the tart pan to cut and remove the excess crust to fit.
Pie crust with bacon. . . doesn’t it make your mouth water?!
Put your bacon-studded crust in the refrigerator and allow it to chill 30 – 45 minutes before adding your other ingredients.
Slice your tomatoes and place them on several layers of paper towels to drain, 30 – 45 minutes. Give them a sprinkling of salt to draw out the excess moisture. You’ll need enough tomato for one layer in your tart pan. I used one large tomato along with a couple of handfuls of smaller tomatoes to cover the surface of the onion and cheese layer.
You can caramelize your onion and mix your filling for your tomato tart a day in advance. To your cooled caramelized onion, add 1 1 /2 cups of shredded cheese (I used half mozzarella and half manchego), 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 3 tablespoons bread crumbs, chopped fresh herbs and salt and pepper. Spread your filling evenly in the bottom of your pan.
Top with drained tomatoes, covering the filling mixture. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, sprinkle with pepper and some chopped fresh thyme leaves.
Bake in preheated oven at 425 degrees, 25 – 30 minutes, or until crust starts to brown and is pulling away from tart pan.
Allow tart to cool in pan on wire rack. Cool completely before removing ring and cutting. Garnish with basil leaves and additional thyme leaves if desired.