Tomato, Saffron and Ricotta Tart starter

Tomato, Saffron and Ricotta Tart Recipe

50 Minutes
Serves: 2
Individual short crust pastry tarts with a delicious filling homemade tomato pesto topped with an egg, cream, Parmesan, ricotta and saffron filling and finished with oven roasted tomatoes. Delicious starter for a traditional Italian dinner party

Recipe Ingreds


  • 40 grams butter
  • 80 grams plain flour
  • salt (to taste)
  • 20 ml water


  • black pepper (to taste)
  • 200 grams cherry tomatoes
  • 2 egg
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 25 grams parmesan or pecorino cheese
  • 125 grams ricotta cheese
  • 6 strands saffron
  • salt (to taste)
  • 100 ml single cream


  • black pepper (to taste)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 0.5 tbsp olive oil
  • salt (to taste)
  • 50 grams sun dried tomatoes(in oil)

Recipe with pictures Steps

Step 1

  • sieve together the flour and salt into a bowl
  • cut the butter into cubes
  • add the butter to the flour
  • blend until the contents forms a crumb, by hand or using a food processor
  • if using a food processor empty the contents of the food processor into a large bowl

Step 2

  • add the water minimising mixing
  • form a ball and flatten
  • place the pastry ball in a plastic bag
  • place in the fridge to cool

Step 3

  • set the oven to 180C 350F or gas mark 4
  • lightly dust a clean work surface with flour
  • roll out the pastry into a circle to fit the flan dishes
  • fit pastry into flan dish
  • prick the pastry cases
  • trim the pastry to fit the flan dish
  • place in the fridge to cool for 15 mins
  • remove from the fridge and place in the oven
  • bake for 8 to 10 mins
  • remove from the oven
  • set a side

Step 4

  • peel and crush the garlic using the garlic crusher or chop finely
  • blend the sun dried tomatoes with the garlic using the hand liquidiser
  • add the olive oil while continuing to blend the tomatoes until the pesto has a thick pouring consistency
  • season with salt and pepper

Step 5

  • wash the cherry tomatoes and then slice in half
  • place the tomato halves on the baking tray with a half the olive oil mix the tomatoes in the oil
  • place in the oven
  • bake for 8 to 10 mins
  • remove from the oven
  • set a side

Step 6

  • Soak the saffron in a tbsp of warm water
  • add the egg(s) to the jug
  • beat the eggs
  • Add the cream

Step 7

  • add the ricotta cheese to the jug
  • add the saffron water
  • blend using the hand liquidiser

Step 8

  • finely grate the parmesan
  • add to the jug
  • mix the ingredients
  • season with salt and pepper

Step 9

  • spread a thin layer of pesto on the tart base
  • pour in the cheese mixture
  • place the roasted tomatoes cut side up into the tart
  • place the tart in the oven and cook for 30 mins

Step 10

  • cook until the tart is set and lightly brown
  • remove the tarts from the oven
  • place the tart on the plate

Recipe Utensils

  • 1 baking tray
  • 2 chopping board
  • 1 food processor
  • 1 Garlic crusher
  • 1 grater
  • 2 hand liquidiser
  • 2 individual flan dish
  • 1 jug
  • 2 large knife
  • 1 medium bowl
  • 1 plastic bags
  • 1 rolling pin
  • 1 sieve

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About our tomato, saffron and ricotta tart recipe

This recipe is from the recipe book Paradiso by Dennis Cotter, we loved this recipe, but we loved the subtle flavour of the tart without the olives so in our recipe we omit the olives.

This tart can be made with homemade shortcrust pastry or pre prepared shortcrust, we prefer homemade as it is better with a buttery shortcrust. The individual pastry cases should be blind baked and then lined with a homemade tomato pesto made from garlic, sun dried tomatoes and olive oil. The cherry tomatoes are oven roasted, and the eggs cream, saffron, ricotta and grated parmesan are mixed together. The egg mixture is added to the pastry case and the cherry tomatoes are placed slice side up on the top of the flans. The flans are baked in the oven till the egg mixture sets and is golden brown on top. 

Other tart starters

Cheese, pinenut and herb tart

Leek and Blue Cheese Tartlet with Roasted Tomatoes

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