Green Tomato Tarte Tatin

If you grow your own tomatoes you’re probably eyeing them and wondering if they’re all going to ripen now the days are shortening (and let’s not even mention the dreaded blight). If you do find yourself with a lot of green tomatoes on your hands this is a good recipe to have handy.

Tomato tarte tatins are more usually made with ripe fruit but I think the sharp flavour of green tomatoes lends itself well to this savoury recipe. The anchovies are optional, and omitting them will make this vegetarian, but I enjoy the pockets of salty punch.

I’ve seen the red tomato version made, variously, with red wine vinegar or honey in place of the balsamic and sugar so by all means experiment, but I really like Felicity Cloake’s inclusion of butter in the caramel. In the case of green tomatoes it enriches what can be a rather austere fruit.

You’ll need an oven-proof frying pan or skillet of about 26cm diameter. If you’re using bought pastry I think it is easier to use a block rather than ready-rolled, which is already so thin that by the time you’ve stretched it to fit the pan it’s looking a bit threadbare.



About 750g green tomatoes

3 tbs olive oil

6 anchovy fillets

A few sprigs of oregano or thyme

Salt and pepper

25g sugar

30g butter

2 tbs balsamic vinegar

400g puff pastry

50g feta or goat’s cheese, crumbled into small chunks


Halve the tomatoes, heat 2 tbs of the oil in a frying pan and fry them cut side down on a moderate heat for five minutes or so, until they’ve taken on some colour and have softened a little. You may need to do this in batches. When done, remove and set aside.

Take the skillet you’ll be making the tart in and add the butter, sugar and balsamic vinegar. Cook on a moderate heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, then let it bubble down until it’s thick and gloopy.

Remove from the heat and add the tomatoes, cut side up, in concentric circles, packing them as tightly as possible. Tuck in the anchovy fillets, if using, season with salt and pepper and scatter in the herbs. Set aside to cool.

Heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Roll out the pastry fairly thinly and cut out a disc about 1cm bigger than the diameter of your skillet.

Pop it in the fridge until the oven is up to temperature. Then place it over the tomatoes, tucking the excess in at the sides. Brush the remaining oil over the pastry and cut a few vents to let out the steam.

Cook for 30-40 minutes (peer through the window after 25 minutes then at five minute intervals because ovens vary so much) until puffed and golden. Remove from the oven, run a knife around the edge and set aside for 10 minutes. 

Drain any excess liquid into a small jug. Place a large plate over the top of the tart, invert it quickly and if any of the tomatoes have become dislodged, tuck them back in place. Cool for another 10 minutes as it’s better warm than piping hot. 

Pour over any juice, scatter over the cheese and a few more herbs and serve sliced into wedges. It’s good with a crunchy salad.

15 thoughts on “Green Tomato Tarte Tatin

  1. This looks absolutely fantastic! A friend has recently complained about a couple of “slow” tomato plants giving her grief on her rooftop terrace – I think you just saved her day 😀 I’ll pass this recipe on later today – in exchange for a slice of the result, of course~

  2. How interesting! I’ve been googling “how to ripen green tomatoes” (with a banana in a paper bag at 21degC-ish!) but my plants are heavy with more green fruit.
    As I cannot tolerate butter (if you remember that’s how I came in contact with you), would an olive oil spread be okay?
    This sounds like a great idea for using up my tommies and the puff pastry I’ve had in the freezer since 2005 🤣
    As a special request, can you please think of an egg-heavy recipe as my new ladies are laying like the clappers – colours ranging from mahogany to blue now! Not an omelette, though. We’re sick to death of them 😂.
    I had cause to contact Fun Guy John Wright again recently. For once I had an edible mushroom 🎉🎊. Had I not contacted him first, you can guarantee it’d have been a poisonous “Yellow Stainer” 🙄

    • Hi Alison, I would be inclined to just skip the butter component and make the caramel with the sugar and balsamic, as I’m unfamiliar with your olive oil spread. Or you could just try it and see if it works and jettison it if it doesn’t – you wouldn’t be wasting very much in the way of ingredients, but of course it’s your choice. (I mean making the caramel/sauce alone, not the whole recipe.)
      Re eggs how about a souffle? Or a curd? You could use the whites to make meringues or ricciarelli biscuits.
      Delighted to hear you had an edible mushroom – our garden is once again sprouting Yellow Stainers. 🙁

      • “Soufflé” and “Meringue”. Two things I have crises of confidence attempting! All that collapsing and sticking bowls over your head. I break out into a cold sweat.
        And I’ve never even heard of riciarelli biscuits 😳.
        As I’m on a biscuit-baking ban (Mr T is a biscuit addict and currently trying to lose weight!) I think I’ll go back to my old favourite, Karpatka. My Polish pal introduced me to it and it’s so moreish. That uses 9 eggs in one go. You should give it a whirl. This is the best recipe I’ve found –
        My pal cheats and uses a packet mix…she’s a lightweight 😂

      • Lol. I have a confession to make in my turn – I really don’t like sweet egg custards, although I’ll make an exception for a well-made pasteis de nata. Ricciarelli are on the blog – good if you have spare egg whites knocking around and your husband’s not on a diet. 🙂

    • It’s called Green Zebra. Not particularly happy with it, tbh, looks pretty but not a great flavour and tends to go a bit squishy when ripe. That’s why I sacrificed it unripe for the tarte tatin!

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