One of my favorite salads is a Caprese [kuh–prey-zey, ‐zee] Salad, with fresh tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, and drizzled with a balsamic reduction. Once the warmer weather moves in I find I’m all about finding ways to incorporate those ingredients into my dishes, and that’s what happened when I created this Caprese Tart.
While at Whole Foods Market the other day I spotted a large container of Heirloom baby tomatoes in red, yellow and orange and couldn’t resist buying them.
I love tomatoes and they’re so good for you. Lycopene a compound found in tomatoes, gives them their distinctive red color, & acts as an antioxidant in the body. Consuming high levels of lycopene can lower the risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer. Cooking tomatoes boosts their lycopene levels. Tomatoes can also reduce cholesterol, help prevent osteoporosis, UV light–induced skin damage and cognitive dysfunction. Levels of beta-carotene, a compound that boosts eye health, are also higher in cooked tomatoes than in raw ones.
Basil an ingredient used in the pesto I created for this dish contains both Vitamins A & K in addition to lutein and zeaxanthin beneficial nutrients to help filter for your eyes, preventing eye damage caused by harmful light exposure.
Fresh Mozzarella while a tasty cheese and treat and an ingredient in my Caprese Tart may not be the best thing to indulge in often since it is high in fat, low in protein, vitamins and minerals. However, on the good side, it contains no carbohydrates and is relatively low in cholesterol.
To make my Caprese Tart even easier to whip up, purchase a package of ready-made pie crust, combine both packages of dough together and roll out onto a half sheet pan for an ooey gooey dish you won’t be able to stop eating!
Okay, so take the good healthy ingredients with the bad. Remember moderation is key to any diet!
Aside from that, if you’re looking for a delicious appetizer or entree that’s quick to prepare my Caprese Tart is it!
Preparing your pesto in advance will have the Caprese Tart ready from start to finish in approximately 45 minutes. It takes about 20-30 minutes to cook depending on your oven and with about 10 minutes to roll the dough and 5 minutes to add the toppings.
Sometimes the simplest dishes are the tastiest and most enjoyable to create and savor. I think you’ll agree once you try this that everything about my Caprese Tart is worth indulging in and worth taking the time to bake up.
- Preheat oven to 450F degrees.
- Remove both packages of pie crust from the box and roll both together into a ball. With a rolling pin roll out to extend slightly larger than your quarter sheet pan. Transfer pie crust to pan, fit into corners and roll excess to create a nice rim.
- Spread prepared pesto onto the base of the pie crust.
- Add mozzarella cheese, tearing if necessary to fit. Top with whole baby tomatoes.
- Brush edges of crust with egg wash by combining 1 egg and 1 tsp. of water together.
- Place in the center of the oven and bake 20-30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
- Sprinkle chiffonade cut basil over baked tart to garnish.
- Drizzle with balsamic reduction, if desired.
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