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Originally published Thursday, June 5, 2014 at 6:04 AM

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Recipe: Tomato Pie

A juicy tomato pie is a savory Southern classic.


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Makes 1 pie

For the crust:

1¼ cups all-purpose flour

¼ cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into pieces

4 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces

½ teaspoon fine sea salt

3 to 4 tablespoons ice-cold water

For the filling:

2¼ pounds tomatoes, thinly sliced

1¼ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

1 onion, diced

1 tablespoon canola oil (or leftover bacon grease)

1¼ teaspoons freshly ground pepper, divided

Coarse ground or Dijon mustard

½ cup freshly grated Gruyère cheese

½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano cheese

¼ cup mayonnaise

½ cup assorted chopped fresh herbs (such as chives, parsley and basil)

1. To prepare the pie crust, process flour, shortening, butter and salt in a food processor or stand mixer until mixture resembles coarse meal. With processor running, gradually add 3 tablespoons ice-cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and process until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and comes together, adding up to 1 tablespoon more water, if necessary. Shape dough into a disc, and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill 30 minutes.

2. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Unwrap dough and place on a lightly floured surface; sprinkle lightly with flour. Roll dough out to 1/8-inch thickness. Press dough into a 9-inch pie plate. Trim dough 1 inch larger than diameter of pie plate; fold overhanging dough under itself along rim of pie plate. Chill until firm, 20 to 30 minutes.

3. Line pie crust with aluminum foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans to keep the crust from bubbling up as it bakes. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove weights and foil. Bake until browned, about five minutes. Let cool slightly. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees.

5. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Place tomatoes in a single layer on paper towels; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Let stand at least 10 minutes to draw out some moisture.

6. Saute onion and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper in hot oil in a skillet over medium heat until onion is tender, three minutes.

7. Pat tomatoes dry with paper towels. Spread an even, thin layer of mustard over the bottom of the crust. Sprinkle evenly with sauteed onions and 1/3 of the cheese. Arrange half the tomatoes over the cheese and cover evenly with 1/3 of the cheese, mayonnaise and half of the herbs. Arrange the remaining half of the tomatoes over top and sprinkle with the rest of the cheese. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.

8. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes or until lightly browned, shielding edges with foil or pie shield to protect the crust from browning too much. Garnish with remaining herbs. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.

— Adapted by Ileana Morales, Tampa Bay Times, from Virginia Willis via Southern Living



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