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Heirloom Tomato Tart with Herbed Nut Cheese

This vegan tart is filled with the  most decadent cashew cheese, simply made with soaked cashews, fresh herbs, sea salt, and a bit of acidic lemon.  Gone are the days of cheese substitutes with weird ingredients and a reminscent taste of plastic.  I use a little Kite Hill almond ricotta for a creamier texture and add fresh herbs and garlic for depth of flavor.  Use this creamy, cheesy filling inside a savory gluten free tart crust and top with seasonal heirloom and cherry tomatoes.

Vegan and Gluten Free Tomato Tart (photo credit: Dishing Up the Dirt) 

Serves 4

Crust

1 cup almond flour

1 cup chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour

3 cloves of garlic, pressed

2 T. dried basil, minced

2 pinches sea salt

1 pinch ground pepper

1/3 cup olive oil

1-2 T. filtered water

Cashew Herb Filling

1 cup raw cashews (soaked in warm water for 2-3 hours)

½ cup Kite Hill “ricotta” cheese (Whole Foods)

2 cloves of garlic, pressed

juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped

2 T. parsley, finely chopped

1/4 cup water + additional if needed to thin out filling

pinch sea salt

Topping

2 small heirloom tomatoes, sliced thin

1/2 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

Extra virgin olive oil

Pinch salt + pepper

fresh basil, roughly chopped

Directions:

Thin slice the heirloom tomatoes and place on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and let rest for about 10 minutes. Flip the tomatoes and place on another layer of paper towels. Sprinkle with a little more salt and set aside until ready to use.

Preheat the oven to 400F. Grease a 9 inch pie or spring form pan lined with parchment paper. In a large bowl, stir together the almond flour, chickpea flour, garlic, basil, salt and pepper. Drizzle in the olive oil and water and stir until the mixture is thoroughly combined (add additional water if needed).

Press the dough into the parchment lined pan, bake until the crust is lightly golden and firm to the touch. About 15-18 minutes.

Prepare the cashew filing by draining and rinsing the soaked cashews. Place the garlic, lemon juice, basil, and parsley in a food processor. Process until finely chopped. Add the Kite Hill “ricotta”, soaked cashews, water and salt. Mix until it reaches the consistency of a thick ricotta cheese (add more water-1 teaspoon at a time-until desired consistency) Taste test and adjust seasonings as needed.

Remove the pre-baked crust from the oven. Spread a medium-thick layer of the cashew filling over the crust and then layer with the sliced tomatoes (after patting them dry). Sprinkle with basil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a extra virgin olive oil and place back in the oven to bake for 35-40 minutes, or until tomatoes are lightly shriveled

Remove from the oven and let the pie cool, then slice and enjoy.

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