For the Crust:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 1 scant teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, grated on a box grater
- 4–5 tablespoons cold water
For the Filling:
- 8 ounces feta cheese (or goat cheese, see note below)
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 8–10 fresh basil leaves
- 3 sprigs (a small handful) fresh parsley leaves, plus more for topping
- 3 springs (a smaller handful) fresh oregano leaves, plus more for topping
For the Topping:
- 4 heirloom tomatoes, sliced into medium-thick slices
- a handful of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- half a cucumber, thinly sliced
- thinly sliced red onion
- kalamata olives, sliced in half
- flaky sea salt
- za’atar and fresh cracked black pepper (optional)
- Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat your oven to 400°F.
- Add the flour, salt, pepper, and Parmesan to a medium bowl. Stir to combine.
- Grate cold butter on the large side of a box grater into the flour mixture. Toss together to combine.
- Add a few tablespoons of water and mix together. Add a few more tablespoons until a just moist shaggy dough emerges in the bowl. Work the dough into a loose and rough ball in the bowl just to ensure it’s well hydrated.
- Add the dough into a 9 or 10-inch round tart pan (preferably with a removable bottom) then press it in firmly up the sides and across the bottom of the pan. Lay a piece of parchment or lightly greased foil over the dough then add enough granulated sugar to fill the tart pan. Gently press the sugar into all the edges then bake for 10 – 15 minutes or just until the edges start to shift in color. Carefully remove the parchment with the sugar (save the now deliciously toasted sugar!) then return the tart shell to the oven to bake until golden throughout, another 10 – 15 minutes.
- Allow the tart shell to cool completely.
- Prepare the whipped feta filling while the tart cools. Add the feta, cream cheese, lemon juice, olive oil, and 1/3 cup heavy cream to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Blend on high speed until the feta begins to smooth. Add a dash more cream as necessary. Add the basil leaves, parsley, and oregano and process until the herbs are tiny bits.
- Spoon the feta filling to the cooled tart shell.
- Layer sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, olives and herbs over the cheese filling. Just before serving top the tart with flake salt and za’atar if you’d like.
- Tart will last, well wrapped in the refrigerator for about two days.
* The use of Feta makes this dish super salty to some. I happen to be a salt-fiend so I love it. If your sensitive to salt I suggst subbing goat cheese for feta. Whipped goat cheese is absolutely delicious in this recipe!