Melbourne home baker extraordinaire Daen Lia returns with a tart just perfect for making the most of summer tomatoes.

Serves 6
Cook time 20 minutes
Prep time 3 hours


Cheddar cheese puff pastry 

300g (2 cups) plain flour, plus extra for dusting 

1 teaspoon sea salt flakes 

150g salted butter 

200g sour cream 

50g cheddar cheese, grated  

Walnut pesto 

2 garlic cloves  

¼ cup walnuts chopped 

1 bunch fresh basil 

¼-½ cup extra virgin olive oil 

30g parmesan, grated 

30g pecorino Romano, grated  

Flaky sea salt 

Tomato tart 

1 disc cheddar cheese puff pastry 

2 large tomatoes, sliced  

100g ricotta 

2 tbsp walnut pesto 

Salt and pepper 

0live oil 

1 egg, whisked for brushing dough 


Cheddar cheese puff pastry 

  1. Chill a large bowl, a box grater and the butter in the freezer for 20 minutes before making the pastry. 
  2. Place the flour and salt in the chilled bowl and whisk together. Grate the butter using the chilled grater into the flour. Rub the butter into the flour until you have a pebble-like crumbly texture. You can do this by pinching and rubbing the butter and flour between your fingers. 
  3. Create a well in the centre of the mixture and add the sour cream and cheddar cheese. Use a fork to slowly combine the flour by bringing it from the outside into the sour cream and cheese in the centre, until most of the flour is moist. 
  4. Lightly dust a work surface with flour and shape the dough into a disc. The dough should be firm and moist but not sticky. You want just enough moisture so the dough is barely sticking to itself. If it needs more moisture, slightly wet your hands when working with it or, if it’s too dry, lightly dust it with flour. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to rest in the fridge for 2 hours or ideally overnight. 
  5. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out into a 2cm thick and long rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds as if you were folding a piece of paper to go into an envelope. Turn the dough clockwise and roll it back out into a 2cm thick rectangle. Repeat this step six times until you have created many layers and the dough is smooth. 
  6. Divide the dough into two and wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Leave to rest in the fridge for a minimum of 15 minutes or up to 2 days. If you’re not going to use it within 2 days, you can store in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

Walnut pesto  

  1. Place the walnuts, garlic cloves and a big pinch of salt into a food processor and blend until you have a chunky texture. Add the basil leaves to the processor and blend while slowly pouring in the olive oil. Stir through the grated cheese.

Tomato tart 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.  
  2. Place the tomato slices onto a plate or tea towel, sprinkle generously with salt and leave to sit for 10 minutes to allow some moisture to be released.  
  3. In a small bowl, mix the ricotta and pesto until well combined.  
  4. Take one disc of puff pastry. Sprinkle your kitchen bench or work surface with flour. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a large circle that is roughly 4mm thick and 25cm wide. Roll the dough onto the rolling pin, then lay it over the prepared tray. 
  5. Evenly spread the ricotta pesto over the puff pastry, leaving a 4cm border around the edges. Place the tomato slices over the ricotta pesto sprinkle with a pinch of pepper and drizzle with olive oil. 
  6. Fold the outside 4cm edge over, pinching the dough together to form a rustic circle shape. Brush the egg wash over all of the dough. This will help give the pastry a lovely golden colour. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden and crisp.
  7. Leave to rest for 15 minutes before slicing into it.