Can you feel Christmas in the air? I haven't seen Home Alone on TV as yet - we all know that's the #1 sign of the Christmas Season in Guyana - but I've been hearing Christmas carols everywhere, seeing Christmas sales, thinking about what shopping I need to get done...and to be honest, deciding whether I should get presents for casual acquaintances or just Scrooge it up.
What are your signs of the Christmas season? Is it hearing Celine Dion croon "So this is Christmas"? Is it hearing rumblings of the dates of your staff parties? Rain? Seeing Pepperpot become available at your favourite restaurant? Another sign of Christmas is that people are clearly more in a liming mood. Impromptu parties happen, your family decides to visit from overseas (either to see you or escape the cold, but let's just ignore the latter), or you're just in the mood to eat. Gym? What gym? See you in January.
My recipe today is something that you can get in the oven reasonably quickly with minimal prep. You use pizza dough mix which totally cuts your overall time. If you want to be awesome and make dough from scratch, more power to you, but I'll just stick to my pizza dough mix for now. There's a bit of double baking, but it isn't too bad. You can prep the tart toppings while the first baking happens, so the second bake happens before you know it. It's a great dish when eaten hot, and holds together relatively well when you reheat it.
Thyme Tomato Bites
Time: 35 mins
1 pack Pizza Dough Mix
2 Medium Tomatoes
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
1/4 – 1/2 tsp dried Thyme, divided
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1/8 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 tsp Parsley
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Cornmeal
Prepare dough according to package directions. Lightly grease a cookie sheet and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roll dough out into a square shape and pinch the edges to create a crust. With a pastry brush, paint olive oil onto the dough and bake in oven for 10 minutes.
While the crust is baking, slice the tomatoes into 1/4 inch slices and chop parsley.
Remove crust from oven and using the same pastry brush, paint the mustard onto the tart. Sprinkle 1/8 of the thyme and black pepper onto tart, and then the cornmeal. This will absorb excess liquid from tomatoes.
Place tomato slices on tart, placing the 4 largest slices in the 4 corners and working your way in. Sprinkle remaining black & red pepper, salt, parsley and thyme. Spray or drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 13 – 15 minutes in oven on top shelf. Remove from oven and cut into squares (one tomato slice per square) with a pizza roller.
Note: These tarts are great when they're hot, but also hold together well as it cools.
If using for a dinner party or lime, you have the option of preparing the tart beforehand and popping it in the oven when you or your guests arrive.