The final days of summer welcome cooler nights and a bountiful tomato harvest, making late summer and early fall the perfect time of year to savor a piping hot tomato pie. If you can find fresh heirloom tomatoes (such as Cherokee Purples) at your local farmers’ market or grocery, I prefer the rich, sweet flavor these fruits give this dish. Tomato pie is a year-round comfort classic, however, and any fresh garden or vine ripe tomatoes will work well.
Active prep time: 40 minutes
Total time: 4 hrs.
For the crust:
c. whole wheat flour
c. unbleached white flour
1 Tbsp. dry thyme
tsp. black pepper
4 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter
c. ice water
For the filling:
3 large heirloom tomatoes or 6 vine ripe tomatoes
2 c. shredded Gruyere cheese
2 Tbsp. fresh thyme, coarsely chopped
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Prepare the pie crust 3 hours before baking the pie. Combine the whole wheat flour, regular flour, dry thyme and black pepper in a large food processor. Cut the cold butter and Crisco into small pieces and add to the flour mixture in the food processor. Blend until the crust mixture resembles coarse meal. Add 1 Tbsp. of ice water at a time, up to cup, mixing until a ball forms. Flatten dough into a disk and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 3 hours.
Once the dough has been in the refrigerator for 2 hours, slice the tomatoes into inch slices. Sprinkle with salt and let drain on paper towels for 30 minutes, and then pat dry. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to form a 1/8″ thick circle. Lay dough over a 9″ tart pan and pat into place, leaving a slightly thicker amount on the sides. Trim off excess. (this can also be made in a traditional pie plate, if desired) Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork, line with aluminum foil and add pie weights (or dried beans). Bake crust for 10 minutes. Remove pie weights and aluminum foil and bake for an additional 12 minutes. Allow crust to cool slightly.
Sprinkle the shredded Gruyere cheese over crust, then arrange tomatoes in an overlapping circular pattern. Sprinkle with nutmeg, black pepper, fresh thyme and fresh parsley. Drizzle the top with the olive oil and bake for 40 minutes. After removing the pie from the oven, let it rest for at least 10 minutes before removing the side of the tart pan, cutting and serving. Serve hot or at room temperature.