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Perfecting the Tomato Tarte Tatin Recipe

As most of you have figured out, we love good food. So that means, we eat out quite often and gather around our table for home-cooked meals as often as we can. I get ideas for dishes from an extensive collection of cookbooks, several cooking magazines and the Santa Rosa Press Democrat and New York Times Food sections.

The last eighteen months, Shirley and I have embarked on a mission to improve our health through a change in lifestyle, including riding bikes and a fish and a plant-based diet. We are not fanatics by any means, but we do eat less pasta and bread and desserts appear on our table less frequently. I have cut out red meat except for lamb occasionally when we are in the South of France.

Eating healthy does not translate into complete denial! Instead, it’s an excuse to try specialty menus such as the vegetarian tasting menu at one of our favourite restaurants, Les Remparts in Venasque. The chef makes a Tomato Tarte Tatin to “die” for and the following recipe is my second attempt to recreate this delicious dish at home. We will let you decide, but this version might be perfection.

Tomato Tarte Tatin Recipe Provence

Tomato Tarte Tatin

Allow enough time to prepare the key ingredients (onions and tomatoes) in advance. This savoury tart is a great lunch dish with a green salad or s starter course at dinner time. Serve at room temperature or slightly warm.
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 11 hours 40 minutes
Course Lunch Dish
Cuisine French, Provencal
Servings 4 people


  • 3 lbs Medium-sized Tomatoes *
  • 3 medium Red Onions
  • 4 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 tbsp Thyme leaves chopped
  • 1/4 cup Grated parmesan cheese
  • 14 oz Puff Pastry **
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1/2 cup Crystallized Sugar
  • 4 tbsp Water
  • 1/3 tsp Sherry Vinegar


  • Thinly slice 3 medium onions.
  • Caramelize the onions with 4 sliced garlic cloves in 2 tablespoons of butter and a pinch of crystallized sugar. About 15 - 20 minutes.
  • Core tomatoes and slice in half. Place cut side down on rimmed baking sheet. Lightly salt and spray lightly with olive oil.
  • Roast tomatoes in 275 degree Fahrenheit oven for 2 1/2 hours. Cool completely. You can do this overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Prepare caramel in 12 inch cast iron pan with 1/2 cup crystallized sugar, 4 tablespoons water and 1/4 teaspoon Sherry vinegar.
  • Arrange roasted tomatoes on top of caramel, face side down. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of thyme leaves over tomatoes.
  • Arrange caramelized onions evenly over tomatoes. Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese over onions.
  • Roll out the puff pastry sheet, cut a 13 inch round and drape over the cast iron skillet. Tuck edges of pastry into pan. Cut slits on top of pastry.
  • Bake for 25 - 30 minutes until crust is puffed and golden brown and delicious.
  • Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
  • Place large plate on top of skillet and carefully flip over. Return any tomatoes that are stuck to skillet back to tarte tatin.


* On a couple of occasions, I used different colour tomatoes.
** You will have extra. Freeze the leftovers for another dish.
Keyword Puff Pastry, Tarts, Tomatoes
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Michel and Shirley

Michel and Shirley

Michel and Shirley, live in wine country, in Windsor, California. They have a full family with two beautiful daughters and five amazing grandchildren. Michel's day job is as CEO of Chancellor Health Care, a company which provides housing and services to older adults.

Previously a co-owner of a popular French bistro called Bistro des Copains located in Western Sonoma County California. The Bistro was closed in early 2015, after nine years!

In 2008, after searching for years and visiting many houses they bought a 17th century stone village house in the medieval village of Sablet which is in the Vaucluse region of Provence France.

Please read about the Sablet House (available for rent) and follow their blog Our House in Provence.

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