Tomato Pie in the Hudson Valley

Ruth Reichl’s emotion-filled cookbook My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life my-kitchen-year2

includes a recipe inspired by James Beard’s Tomato Pie.  She developed it and many others in the farm-to-table communities of The Berkshires and The Hudson Valley, havens for markets, farmstands and neighbors who drop by to share the riches of their gardens.  Tomato Pie includes elements of a BLT: fat, juicy tomatoes, mayo, bacon if you’d like, and greens.  I bet you sneak some cheddar onto your best BLT ‘s- and if you haven’t yet, it’s time.  This is where the joy of savory pie meets the retro-comfort food of bygone casserole days.   My Tomato Pie (below-inspired by Ruth’s, James Beard’s & Jackie’s mom’s) is baked in a biscuit crust and laced with local cheeses and enough greens to make almost all the guilt fade away. This version includes shallots, kale, country onions, spinach, and a plethora of local cheeses designed to melt over, accent, and praise a seasonal bounty of heirloom tomatoes. My dear friend Jackie and I made it after a hike on a late summer day and here’s how it all turned out.

Susie Norris, recipes, Food Market Gypsy, Tomato Pie

the beginning – a ripe 1 pounder

Susie Norris, tomato pie, savory recipes, cookbooks, food blogs, food market gypsy

Heirlooms

Susie Norris, Food Market Gypsy, savory pie recipes, tomato pie, cookbooks, food blogs

spellcheck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Susie Norris, Berkshires, food blog, Food Market Gypsy

My Berkshire path

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ready

Susie Norris, Jacqueline Rogers, Hudson Valley, tomato pie, savory pie recipes, cookbooks, food blog, food market gypsy

Jack & Susie on the trail

TOMATO PIE

INSPIRED BY RR INSPIRED BY JB

The Biscuit Crust:

2 cups all purpose Flour

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 heaping teaspoon salt

6 Tablespoons butter (preferably European and/or local; cubed)

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup shallots (sauteed in butter until soft)

3 Tablspooons mixed herbs (chive, parsley, thyme, and/or cilantro – use 1 Tablespoon in the crust and save the other two for the filling)

1 egg yolk mixed with 1 splash of milk (egg wash) (optional)

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and put them in  the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  (No mixer?  It’s fine to work with a big bowl and a big whisk.)  Add the butter and mix on low until it is barely blended and the butter chunks are about the size of peas, each one coated with the flour mixture on all sides.  Add the buttermilk, shallots & 1 Tablespoon of chopped herbs.) Mix only until the dough comes together, and scoop it out onto a piece of parchment paper and flatten it with your hands, another piece of parchment paper or a rolling pin.  Allow it to rest in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling. Once the filling is ready, flatten out the biscuit dough some more with a rolling pin, and place the crust in a 9″ pie pan.  Press the dough in so that it is thin (1/2″ at the most) and flute the edges and brush with egg wash if desired (it will make your crust brown better).  You can use extra dough as decoration on top.

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Local tomatoes, grilled shallots and Monterey Chevre from Rawson Brook Farm in Monterey, MA

Tomato, Greens & Cheese Filling:

4-6 large tomatoes (heirlooms; or 6-7 Romas), lightly chopped & drained of most of the juice – approx. 2 pounds

1/2 cup chopped kale

1/2 cup chopped Spinach

1 onion, sauteed

2 Tablespoons goat cheese (such as Monterey Chevre from Rawson Brook Farm)

1 cup sharp cheddar (save 1/4 cup to place on top)

2 Tablespoons plain yogurt

1 Tablespoon sour cream

2 Tablespoons Mayo

Salt

hot sauce (optional, to taste)

bacon (optional, 1/2 cup cooked bacon pieces or lardons)

cherry tomatoes for decoration (optional)

Place all the ingredients in a medium bowl and mix together.  Place the mixture into the prepared pie pan over the crust and decorate the top with cherry tomatoes or extra biscuit dough.  Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes, until the crust is medium brown on the bottom and the edges.

Susie Norris, food blogs, recipes, tomato pie, savory pies, cookbooks, food market gypsy

going in

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late summer hydrangea

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2

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still warm

Susie Norris, Hudson Valle, Berkshires, food blog, Food Market Gypsy, savory pie, tomato pie

Susie on Mt. Allender; Hudson Valley below.

Jacqueline Rogers

jackie & a bear in a bar

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