It's mid summer, do you have a bounty of tomatoes overtaking your countertop? Me too. I love that "problem." Upon brainstorming how to use up some of those big juicy tomatoes, I decided to make a bite sized version of one of my favorite appetizers, the tomato tart. It was absolutely delicious, but before I tell you the recipe, let me first share with you a little story.
After preparing my tomato tartlet filling last night, I generously filled each mini fillo shell and stuck the tasty bites in the oven. While they baked I set up my picture station for the photos, and eight minutes later I could smell the delicious aroma wafting out of the oven. I pulled out the little appetizers and plated them up.
After sneaking one tart, and savoring the deliciously fresh and juicy bite, I started my pictures. This is when the story develops.
As you may note in this (rather blurry) photo, there is a strange black and white blob hiding underneath the glass. Rascal, my cat.
I wasn't concerned, Rascal often likes to make an appearance in at least one shot each recipe.
I should have known better.
I managed to take one more picture before Rascal lived up to his name, jumped up on the table and knocked the platter to the ground. Tomatoes, tarts, cheese, basil, EVERYWHERE.
I'm warning you, do not be fooled by this adorable face... He uses it as a sort of super power, which gains your trust with cuteness, in order to try some of your food. Honestly, he somehow manages to sneak a taste with nearly every meal I prepare... I don't know how he does it, his powers are clearly very advanced. Perhaps if you have a pet, you know exactly what I'm talking about.
Well, one lone tart survived, landing miraculously upright on the plate. At least I got to enjoy two. Rascal got the rest. That darn cat, good thing he's so ridiculously cute :-)
Do you have any sneaky pet stories? Let me know below!
Yields: 15 Tartlets
- 1 package mini fillo shells
- I found Athens Mini Fillo Shells in the freezer section of my grocery store.
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
- 1 tbls. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. balsamic vinegar (use the best quality you have)
- 4-5 fresh basil leaves
- Salt and pepper - to taste
- Preheat oven to 350.
- In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
- Dice and seed one large tomato, add to mixing bowl.
- Finely chiffonade the fresh basil and add to the bowl.
- Add cheese and gently stir to combine.
- Taste the filling and season with salt and pepper as desired.
- Generously fill each mini tart shell with the filling, and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Bake tarts in the oven for 8-9 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the shells are lightly browned and crispy.
- Remove from oven, keep away from hungry pets, and enjoy!