A week ago, I was at our local farmer's market and discovered a bounty of end of season heirloom tomatoes and beautiful zucchini flowers. I decided to make a tomato pie inspired by a recipe from my friend Susan. I would frequently make tomato pie when we lived in Italy and loved to eat the leftovers for days. This time, I added zucchini flowers and sun dried tomatoes for a beautiful and delicious treat.
In Minnesota, we treasure the days as Summer and Fall come to an end and our gardens give us the last of fresh produce of the year. I popped out to our little patio garden and harvested a bunch of fresh oregano to put with the pie as well. Along with the oregano, I sprinkled on our signature Love in a Tuscan Kitchen herb blend from our friends at Gardenaire and it looked stunning!
Zucchini Flower and Tomato Pie
6-7 Heirloom tomatoes
½ cup panko bread crumbs
6 zucchini flowers (washed, remove stem and stamen)
8 eggs (beaten)
½ cup milk or heavy cream
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp fresh or dried oregano
1 tsp Love in a Tuscan Kitchen herb blend (Gardeniare)
Salt and pepper to taste
8 slices Gouda, Swiss, or cheddar cheese (you can also use 8 ounces of shredded cheese)
5 slices of bacon or pancetta (cubed)
6-7 sun-dried tomatoes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Start by slicing the tomatoes and lay out on a paper towel to take out some of the moisture. Sprinkle with a little salt and let sit for 10 minutes. Pat tops and bottom of slices to dry before using.
Next wash and remove the stems and stamen of the zucchini flowers. Strip off the individual petals and lay them out on a paper towel to dry.
Prepare a 9 inch pie pan by spraying with oil spray and coat well with the panko bread crumbs. Next, place a layer of sliced tomatoes on the bottom of the pie pan. Next add a layer of cheese. Keep layering tomatoes and cheese until you have filled the pie plate to about ¾ full. Reserve some cheese for the top of the pie.
Mix the eggs (beaten) with the milk or cream, mustard powder, salt, pepper, and oregano. Stir well. Pour the egg mixture over the tomatoes and cheese. Tap the pie plate to make sure the egg mixture goes to the bottom of the plate through the tomatoes.
Top the egg mixture with cheese and bacon. Layer the zucchini flower petals over the top in the shape of a sunflower. Lay on the sun-dried tomatoes in the middle. Sprinkle with additional oregano (if desired).
Place in oven and bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown on the top.
Slice and serve with a fresh, green salad.