This recipe is definitely not one of my own creations, as I’m sure many of you probably already know, if you’re an avid foodie like me and are captivated by anything food related. It’s like those people who are attracted to shiny things! Food is my shiny thing. :-)
The recipe for this lovely little “pie” comes straight from the glossy pages of Food Network magazine. There was a picture of this on the cover of the most recent edition, and I swear it was taunting me as I was trying to grocery shop. Every time I would go down an aisle and pass it in the checkout stands, I stopped and drooled for a few seconds! The picture on the cover is the only reason I even bought the stinkin’ magazine!! But, I’m glad I did, because there are some really good recipes in there.
Since the farmer’s markets have been back, I’ve been frequenting them often in hopes of finding some beautiful heirloom tomatoes specifically for this pie. Well, on Wednesday, I was a lucky girl indeed! Not only did I manage to find enough little beauties for this pie, but we enjoyed some in salads that night too! However, because of the amount of work required to make this, I didn’t get around to it until last night. And, we had guests from out of town, so it turned out to be the perfect opportunity… I had some more guinea pigs! ;-)
I will have you all know, there was not even a single crumb of this stuff left in the pie plate by the end of the meal. I had promised one of my coworkers that I would bring him some the next time I worked, but that’s not gonna happen now! Next time… Of course, you all know me, so I didn’t follow the recipe exactly. Because I worked in the morning, I opted to use an already prepared pie crust to save on time. (Honestly, I hate rolling out pie crust anyways, so it wasn’t a hard decision for me. Pillsbury is pretty darn good at making pie crusts that taste a lot like homemade, and it’s less frustrating for me, so I go with that instead…) I also did some research, and found that Manchego cheese is ridiculously expensive, so opted for a similar substitute which I really love, Parmesan. And, because this is Wisconsin, you KNOW I didn’t stick with their measurements for cheese! Lol
Actually, at work last week, I was given the opportunity to try a new cheese, Morel Mushroom and Leek Jack, which was really good. So, imagine my surprise and delight when I found it at my local market! I had been telling my mama and sister about it for a few days (and a couple of my friends, too), so decided to pick some up. I cut up some for everyone to sample, and then grated some to mix in with the other cheeses. It was sooooooo good! The heat from the oven helped bring out some of the mushroom and leek flavors, which really complimented the rest of the dish. Of course, if you can’t find it or don’t like mushrooms or leeks (onions), don’t worry about it. Use whatever you like best or something you want to experiment with! And, if you’d like, you can find the original recipe, complete with a crust recipe, on the Food Network website.
2 prepared 9-inch pie crusts, unbaked
¾ c. plus 3 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2¼ lb. mixed heirloom tomatoes
¼ c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
¼ c. mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. breadcrumbs
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh chives
3 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
½ tsp. dried thyme
Freshly ground pepper
For the crust: Place one prepared crust, rolled out into a circle, on your work surface, top with the 3 tablespoons of freshly shredded Parmesan cheese, and place the second crust on top of the cheese; roll the crusts out together into a 13-inch round. Transfer the dough to a 9½-inch deep-dish pie plate. Fold the overhang under itself and crimp the edges; pierce the bottom of the crust all over with a fork and refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°.
Line the crust with foil, then fill with dried beans. Bake until the edges are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove the foil and beans and continue baking until golden all over, 10 to 15 more minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.
Make the filling: Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until they are caramelized, about 25 minutes. Let cool. Meanwhile, thinly slice the tomatoes; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of sea salt in a colander. Let the tomatoes drain, gently turning occasionally, about 30 minutes. Place the tomatoes on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels to dry off some of the liquid.
Increase the oven temperature to 375°. Combine the remaining 3/4 cup Parmesan, the mozzarella, Monterey Jack, mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons each chives and parsley, the thyme, ¼ teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper, and the sautéed onion in a bowl; spread in the crust. Arrange the tomatoes on top of the cheese mixture and drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with pepper. Cover the edges of the pie crust with foil or pie crust shields and bake until the tomatoes are browned, about 50 minutes. Top with the remaining 1 tablespoon each chives and parsley.