The combination of tomato and basil is quintessential summer. Add a store bought pie crust, some garlic, grated cheeses and mayo and you’ve got yourself a summer tomato basil pie. I make this recipe often enough that it's one of the dishes on my "Go-to" summertime meals list.
I was an adult (in my early 20s) before I would eat tomatoes with any regularity. So parents, as Anna and I like to say, just keep offering. (You can read more about picky eating in this post). Eventually, your child might try that food you've been wanting them to eat. Neither of my children like tomatoes. But they love this pie. They eat around the tomatoes. Maybe someday they'll eat them!
Just because your child might not like tomatoes, don’t let that steer you away from making this simple and tasty pie the next time you're hungry for delicious ripe tomatoes and sweet basil. Serve it with corn on the cob and green beans; or sliced watermelon and a mixed green salad. The pie tastes great warm or room temperature.
The recipe is adapted from a recipe my mother-in-law cut out of a newspaper many, many years ago. The recipe calls for a store bought pie crust, otherwise I wouldn't make it nearly as often. As a former professional baker, before I had kids, I might have even scoffed at the idea of using a store bought crust. It wasn’t until I had kids that I became a fan. Who has time to make their own pie crust on a weeknight?! Not me! I typically just buy whatever frozen crust is in the freezer section wherever I happen to be grocery shopping.
Prick the bottom of the crust all over with a fork before par baking it. You can also line the bottom of the pie crust with a piece of parchment paper and fill it with dried beans or rice to par bake it.
After the crust is par baked according to the manufacturer instructions, sprinkle the bottom of the pie with ½ cup grated mozzarella.
While the crust par bakes, slice the tomatoes into 1 inch wedges; chop the basil and garlic, and mix together the remaining grated mozzarella, grated parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Layer the tomato wedges on top of the cheese. Then sprinkle the tomatoes with the chopped garlic and basil.
Spread the mayo and cheese mixture over the tomatoes and basil. Place into your preheated 375 F oven for 30-40 minutes.
Check after 30 minutes. Remove from the oven once it's nicely brown. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes or more before serving.
There are so many tomato pie recipes out there. I'm looking forward to trying this version of a Jame's Beard Tomato Corn Pie from an issue of Gourmet Magazine as well as Vivian Howard's recipe for Roasted and Fresh Tomato Pie.
Do you have a favorite tomato pie recipe?
Summer Tomato Basil Pie
- 1 store bought frozen pie crust
- 2 medium tomatoes or 4 roma tomatoes
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh basil chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
- 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese 8 oz
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- ¾ cup mayonnaise
- Pinch of salt
- A few turns of freshly ground pepper.
- Preheat your oven to 375 F. (or the temperature recommended on the pie crust instructions)
- Gently prick the bottom of your frozen pie crust all over with a fork. (You can also line the pie crust with a piece of parchment paper and fill it with rice or dried beans. Either keeps the crust from puffing up). Don’t worry if the crust puffs up a bit, you can use a fork to gently release the air.
- Bake pie crust according to manufacturers instructions. (I bake mine at 375 F for about 15 minutes or until the crust begins to lightly brown).
- Remove the par baked crust from the oven and sprinkle ½ cup of the grated cheese over the parbaked crust.
- While the crust is baking, prepare the filling; slice the tomatoes into wedges about 1 inch thick; and chop the garlic and basil
- Mix together the rest of the grated mozzarella cheese, grated parmesan, mayonnaise, salt and pepper.
- Arrange the tomatoes on top of the cheese in the bottom of the pie plate.
- Top the tomatoes with the chopped garlic and basil.
- Gently spread the mayo and cheese mixture over the tomatoes and basil.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the top is nicely brown. Check the pie after 30 minutes. Continue baking for another 5-10 minutes or until the top is mostly brown.
- Allow to cool and serve. Enjoy!
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