I collapsed on the couch last night with a piece of this pie, turned on the TV and watched about 30 minutes of a dirt bike race in another language before I snapped out of it and realized what I was watching. It’s been that kind of crazy, head spinning, busy week. It was the type of week for lots of take-out. Apparently, my garden had other plans for me. All 38 tomato plants are spitting out pounds of fruit faster than I can eat them. When the freezer hit the point where it could not possibly hold another jar of tomato sauce, I pulled out a recipe I had seen from the beginning of the summer for this Tomato and Cheddar Pie. Even though I would have loved to have been cocooned under the covers, recovering from the day, I deliriously made pie dough while standing up, half asleep. It was well worth it and deliciously distracting enough to sit through a dirt bike competition without realizing it.
So this pie… WOW. Where do I begin? This pie is a wonderful Southern creation. I’ve never had anything like it before or really seen any recipes for it. Here’s why I think this Southern staple is great, certainly not exactly health food, but great none the less. The best part of the recipe is the batch of biscuit dough which ingeniously serves as the pie crust. The buttery biscuit crust is layered with fresh tomatoes and obscene amounts of cheddar cheese and then smothered in the most deliciously tangy mayonnaise sauce with fresh herbs you have ever tasted.
Bake it. Eat it. FEEL NO GUILT. It is worth every single calorie.
Tomato and Cheddar Pie
Loosely adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1 cup buttermilk or 1 cup milk soured with a splash of white vinegar
- 1 1/2 cups red cherry tomatoes
- 2 large yellow ( or red ) tomatoes, sliced
- 2 1/2 cups grated cheddar
- 1 baby leek or scallion, washed and chopped
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoon chopped basil
- 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
- 1 teaspoon chopped tarragon
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl. Using your fingers, rub in butter until a coarse meal forms. Some small chunks of butter should remain. Stir in buttermilk and gently knead with your hands briefly, until a soft dough forms. Wrap in plastic and chill for an hour.
Preheat oven to 425°. Roll out dough between 2 sheets of plastic wrap to a round that will fit into a 9 inch ceramic or glass pie dish. Remove top layer of plastic wrap and turn dough over into pie dish. Take-off remaining top layer of plastic wrap. Gently press dough into pan if some areas on the sides are thicker than the bottom.
Whisk scallion/leeks, mayonnaise, herbs, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
Layer 1/3 of the cheese onto the pie crust and then top with cherry tomatoes. Spread half of mayonnaise mixture over tomatoes and another 1/3 of the cheese.
Next layer the large sliced tomatoes. Spread remaining mayonnaise mixture on top of slices. Finish by sprinkling the remaining 1/3 of the cheese.
Bake pie until crust is golden and cheese is golden brown, 35-40 minutes. Tent with foil if crusts is getting too dark. Let pie cool at least 1 hour before slicing and serving.
For original recipe see http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2011/08/tomato-and-cheddar-pie#ixzz1XyIpu5m2