Today I harvested the first of this season's tomatoes. These are "Mr. Stripey." They are a little bigger than a golf ball when ripe, and have faint orange stripes running down their red skins. They have an intense, classic tomato-y flavor:
To celebrate the first harvest, I made a Pate Brisee, based on Martha Stewart's recipe. I blind-baked the tart shell (that means, baking it first with no filling in it), then I layered in some caramelized onions. Over the onions I scattered thin shavings of Manchego cheese and little clumps of Pt. Reyes Blue, a sharp cheese with a bit of bite. I quartered the tomatoes and placed them in concentric circles. Over them, I shaved a bit of Parmeggiano-Reggiano, using a microplane:
Then I put the tart back in the oven and baked it until the tomatoes were soft and the tart crust was beginning to deepen to a dark gold:
Right before serving, I added a generous handful of roughly chopped basil, fresh from my garden:
Oh, man. It tastes like Summer. Bring it on!