4 individual tartlettes or one 10” tart

The  best time to make this is when tomatoes and corn are in season and your garden is full of fresh basil. The cornmeal crust is a nice compliment to the fresh corn in the tart- and the dough is very easy to work with - provided that you chill it first. I like to make individual tartlettes, but you can certainly use this recipe to make a single 10 inch tart.

For the crust

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1/3 cup fine yellow cornmeal

1 t sugar

1 1/4 t kosher salt

6 T unsalted butter- cut into 1/2 inch pieces- well chilled

1/4 cup ice water

4- 5” tart pans with removable bottoms- or parchment paper tart forms*

In a medium bowl,mix together the flour, cornmeal,sugar and salt. Cut in the chilled butter with a pastry blender-or fork. You can also use a food processor- pulsing until it’s evenly distributed- but still can se some butter chunks. Slowly add the  ice water and mix until the dough starts to come together- you may not need all the water.

Gather the dough with your hands and divide it into four balls. Lay them onto plastic wrap and flatten into a disc- wrap it up and chill for at least 1 hour.

When chilled, working on a well floured- surface- i like to use marble- sprinkle the dough with some flour and roll out to about  an 8 inch circle- lifting the dough once with a metal spatula- and re-flouring the surface.

Fold the dough in half and gently fit it into the tart pan - pushing it down evenly and up the sides- trim if needed- i like the rustic look.

Return to the fridge for 15 minutes or so.

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Prick the pastry on the bottom and sides with a fork all over. Bake for about 6-7 minutes until it no longer looks like dough and is starting to firm up.

for the filling

1 cup yellow onion- thin sliced

1  1/2 cup fresh sweet corn- cut off the cob- about 2 ears- you don’t have to be exact

2 cloves garlic- minced

1 large ripe tomato

12 basil leaves- cut into chiffonade    

1  1/2 cups fine shredded gruyere cheese

1 cup heavy cream

2 eggs

1/2 t kosher salt

1/2 t fresh ground black pepper

1 T olive oil

Slice the tomatoes about 3/8 inch thick- you want 4 nice slices for the tarts. Lay them on paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Let them rest while you prepare the rest of the filling.

Heat the olive oil  in a saute pan on medium heat - saute the onions until limp- and starting to take on a little color. Add the garlic and stir well- adding more oil if necessary. Add the corn and stir and cook everything for a few minutes on medium heat. Remove from heat. This can be done up to an hour in advance for later baking.

In a med bowl, mix the eggs and cream and add the salt and pepper. Add the corn/ onion mixture and fresh basil and combine well.

Reserve 1/2 cup of the cheese. Divide the rest evenly and sprinkle into the bottom of the pre-cooked tart shells. Ladle in the filling- the corn sinks to the bottom- so keep stirring and keeping the mixture evenly distributed. Top each with a tomato slice and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the tarts. Place the tartlettes on a baking sheet.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes until crust is golden and the custard is set. Serve warm or room tem

* You can find parchment paper molds at many gourmet cookware stores as well as baking supply stores. I found these at Sur La Table and they are great when gifting food to friends and family. They travel well and you remove the paper right before serving.These 5 inch  round  and 1 1/2 inch deep cost 50 cents-each.