Mozarella and Parma Ham Tart with Basil

This is incredibly easy and so yummy that whoever you're making it for will be really impressed and you really won't have done anything much. If you were really organised you could make these ahead but you'd need a bigger fridge than I've got and they only take ten mins as it is anyway.

MOZARELLA AND PARMA HAM TART
Serves 4

500g packet puff pastry (I like to roll it myself but you can get pre-rolled if you prefer)
6 vine-ripened tomatoes
6 slices parma ham
125ml olive oil
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 ball mozzarella (unless you are completely decadent and naughty in which case have 2), drained and torn.
Basil leaves (about 6 or 7)
1 egg, beaten to use as egg wash

Pre-heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Now you really can chop the tomatoes and make the garlic oil before... these are basically like pizza's but without all the faffing with the dough.

1. Slice the tops and bottoms off the tomatoes and then cut into reasonably thin slices and lay out on a plate covered in kitchen roll. Then cover the tomatoes with kitchen roll so any excess liquid is absorbed. You don't want soggy tarts.

2. Put the garlic and olive oil in a bowl and bring to the boil, then turn the heat to low and let it cook for 5 minutes or until the garlic is brown. Turn the heat off and set aside.

3. Remove the garlic from the oil and slice. Keep the oil ready for basting the pastry.

4. Roll out the pastry or not if you've got pre-rolled. I use a side plate to measure out 4 circles from the dough (it should be about 3mm thick). Place the circles on greased baking trays (I use reusable baking sheets so I don't have to faff about with butter).

5. Using the tip of a knife and being sure you don't cut through  the pastry, make a circle about 1cm from the edge of the pastry disc.

Pastry base with very wonky guideline - just because I don't want you to feel pressured obviously

6. Brush the outside of this circle with the egg wash and the inside with garlic oil.

7. Staying inside the border line make a layer of tomato's first and then if you want to be really garlicky add some of the chopped up garlic.

8. Sprinkle over the torn up mozzarella and then do the same with torn parma ham.
Tarts pre-oven

9. Cook in the oven for 12-15 minutes (slightly longer maybe, my oven is a bit hot) until the pastry is puffed and golden and everything looks yummy.

10. Sprinkle with torn basil and serve 1 per person with onion jam or something similar.
Finished tart


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