Michael van Straten
Michael van Straten
australiaphen375.com

Tomato And Pesto Tarts

Makes 4

1 sheet ready to cook puff pastry
About 2 tbspns olive oil
2 tbsp passata
8 small plum tomatoes
Half a jar of ready-made pesto

Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Roll the pastry out on a floured board and cut into four 6 inch circles (you can always use a cereal bowl and cut round it). Lightly oil a baking sheet, place the pastry circles on the sheet and with a sharp knife cut quarter inch slashes all round the outside of each dough circle.

Put in the oven for 10 minutes then remove.

Spread a thin smear of passata over each, then halve the tomatoes lengthways and place four pieces, cut side up on the pastry.

Put a dollop of pesto between each of the tomato halves and a teaspoonful in the middle and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Return to the oven for about another 15 minutes, but check regularly.

Delicious hot or cold.

My late mother would be appalled at the thought of me using ready made pastry as she was an absolutely superb pastry cook. Unfortunately my warm hands, which are so good for being an osteopath, are disaster when it comes to making dough, and anyway, I know lots of the top chefs who think ready made is perfectly acceptable.

These are so simple and in fact a great way to get the youngsters cooking for themselves – under supervision of course. They look really great, they taste lovely and they are highly nutritious. They provide energy from the pastry; fibre, vitamin C and masses of lycopene from the tomatoes and passata; and all the benefits of the calming herb basil in the pesto. These are dairy-free but if you want to add some grated cheese or a slice or two of mozzarella as well it provides extra calcium and you end up with a yummy pizza.

 

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