With layers of tomatoes, cheese, basil and more layered into a pastry crust, this savory tomato pie is sure to win you over. It is like a tomato sandwich, but in pie form and even better!
My twist on a southern tomato pie is a perfect summertime dish. Loads of fresh tomatoes with just enough cheese and basil to make it crazy delicious.
Ripe juicy tomatoes are just falling off the vine in our backyard garden right now. There are bags full to pick every day. So that means it’s time to get creative.
Of course we’ve already enjoyed BLTs and my husband’s memory has been refreshed as to how much better his lunchtime sandwiches are with a slice of garden fresh tomato.
We’ve also had fajitas, pasta with cherry tomatoes, and some roasted veggie salsa. I also really enjoy a thick slice of tomato topped with cottage cheese and seasoned salt.
No matter how fast we use them, the piles of tomatoes keep growing. Luckily that isn’t something we see as a problem around here, it is just a signal that it is time to make a pie.
Both are great and easy to serve with their rectangular shapes. But sometimes you just want more of a traditional pie.
This recipe definitely fits the bill. There is just something about seeing those tomato slices on top that draws me in every time I make it.
What Kind of Tomatoes Should I Use for Tomato Pie?
You can really use just about any tomatoes you have. I like using some yellow and some red for visual effect.
However, you can use all one color or the other. It will be tasty no matter what.
I usually use slicing tomatoes. Again, I think they look the nicest and we usually have a variety to choose from.
However, roma tomatoes would work really nicely. They have a higher meat to pulp ratio, so they would actually make a really nice pie.
Avoiding a Soggy Pie
Just make sure to drain whatever tomatoes you use really well. If they still have all of their water content, the pie will be soupy.
Slicing the tomatoes thin and arranging them over a couple of layers of paper towel will start the draining process. Sprinkle them with some salt to draw out the excess liquid.
Let them sit for about 30 minutes to give the salt a chance to work. Then pat the tomatoes with more paper towels until all of the extra liquid is removed.
Then layer them in the pie with the mayonnaise and cheese mixture. I like to end with a layer of the prettiest tomato slices and a bit more fresh cracked black pepper.
Adding some cornmeal to the bottom of pie also helps to keep the bottom from being soggy. The cornmeal will help to absorb extra liquid rather than it all sitting on the crust.
Then bake it for about half of the time uncovered. Go ahead and cover the pie for the second half of the bake time to keep the edges from getting two brown.
The pie is done with the crust is golden, the filling looks mostly set, and the liquid is bubbling. Allow the pie to cool for at least an hour to make serving it easier.
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Savory Tomato Pie
- 1 pie crust
- 6 medium tomatoes about 2 1/2 pounds
- 1¼ teaspoon salt divided
- 1 small onion
- 1½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 1 large egg
- 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon basil
- 1 Tablespoon chives
- 2 generous Tablespoons cornmeal
- additional basil and pepper for garnish
- Prepare pie crust and place in 9-inch pie pan. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Slice the tomatoes into thin slices, removing the seeds as you go. Spread the slices out over paper towels and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt. Allow to sit and drain for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, pat additional paper towels to remove any remaining moisture.6 medium tomatoes, 1¼ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Grate the onion into a small bowl. Stir in the mayonnaise, cheese, egg, vinegar, sugar, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Chop the basil and chives and add to the cheese mixture.1 small onion, 1½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, ½ cup mayonnaise, 1 large egg, 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 2 teaspoons granulated sugar, ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, 1 Tablespoon basil, 1 Tablespoon chives
- Sprinkle the cornmeal over the bottom of the prepared pie crust. Dollop 1/3 of the cheese mixture over the cornmeal, gently spreading it around. (It's ok if some of the cornmeal gets mixed into the cheese mixture.)2 generous Tablespoons cornmeal
- Arrange a layer of about half the tomatoes over the crust, then 1/3 of the cheese mixture. Add the remaining tomatoes and cheese mixture on top of that. Top with some pretty tomato slices, arranging them nicely.
- Sprinkle with a bit more pepper and bake for 25 minutes. Cover with foil and bake for another 20-25 minutes. The crust should be golden and the filling should look set.
- Allow to stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour before serving. Garnish with additional herbs if desired.