Such a treat, it’s almost like a very elegant pizza!
For the pastry:
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/4 sticks of butter or 10 ounces (dairy free Earth’s Balance) very cold!!!
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/2 cup iced water
1/2 lb dried beans, for “baking blind” the crust with a sheet of foil
6 oz vegan pesto
1 1/2 lb of tomatoes – a selection or any you have handy, large ones sliced, small ones cut in half
1 tablespoon olive oil
Pinch of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oven to 400F
To make the pastry make sure the butter and water are very cold.
Place the flour, salt, pepper and thyme into a large bowl. Cut the butter into the bowl. Using your fingers, “rub in” the butter into the flour until you’re left with a crumbly mixture that looks like very large peas.
Make a well in the mixture and add three quarters of the water and the vinegar, gently work the pastry together, if it’s too dry and crumbly add the rest of the water.
Gently shape the pastry into a disc, then wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes to “relax”.
Remove pastry from the fridge, remove from the plastic wrap. On a well floured board, roll out the pastry into a rectangle. Drape the pastry over the rolling pin and transfer it to the tart pan, use a knife to trim the pastry to fit the pan. Place the tart pan on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with cooking oil and lay it gently (oil side down) on the pastry case. Pour the dried beans on top of the foil to weigh it down.
Bake the pastry case for 20 minutes with the foil and beans.
Remove from the oven, carefully remove the foil and beans, very gently prick the bottom of the pastry case with a fork so you can see the indents. Be careful not to press too hard and go right through the pastry.
Return to the oven and cook for a further 10 minutes or until lightly browned.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a good 15 minutes. Spread the pesto over the base of the tart shell. Pile the prepared tomatoes on top of the pesto, sprinkle over the olive oil, salt and pepper.
Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven, cool a little and serve garnished with fresh basil.