Courgette tart

Serves 4-6

This is a simple tart for a dinner-party starter; or you could slice it into fingers for cocktail snacks.

200g butter puff pastry rolled to about one-third of a cm
2 large courgettes
A little vegetable or corn oil for frying
3 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
2tsp tomato purée
1tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2tbsp fresh white breadcrumbs
2tbsp freshly-grated Parmesan

Preheat the oven to 200C/gas mark 6. Cut the pastry into rectangles about 30cm x 8cm, lay them on a baking tray and prick all over with a fork. Bake for 6-7 minutes without colouring and put to one side. Cut the courgettes into 7cm lengths then cut them lengthways into slices of about one-third of a centimetre thick.

Heat a little vegetable oil in a non-stick or heavy frying pan and fry the courgettes for a minute on each side on a high heat until they begin to colour; then transfer to a plate. Heat the olive oil in the same pan and fry the tomatoes for a minute, season, add the tomato purée and coarsely blend them in a food processor.

To serve, spread the tomato mixture on to the pastry, arrange the courgettes on top by overlapping them. Season, mix the breadcrumbs and Parmesan together and scatter on top of the courgettes. Bake for 8-10 minutes, remove from the oven and serve whole on a board and cut it at the table; or you could cut into portions and serve on warm serving plates.

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