Once you have a batch of confit cherry tomatoes, there's no limit to what you can do with them: toss with cooked pasta and fresh herbs, serve on toast or freeze in storage bags for later use. For these tartlets, the oil from the confit is used to layer filo dough into muffin tins. Be as sparing as you can with the oil for the best results. These are terrific appetizers or a late-summer lunch when served with a salad.
To make the cherry tomato confit, preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer in a baking dish and pour in the olive oil. Tuck in the garlic, sprigs of thyme and rosemary and bay leaf. Bake just until the cherry tomatoes begin to split but still plump, about 30 minutes.
Set aside to cool to room temperature for storage, or to make the tartlettes.
You will have plenty of very flavorful olive oil to use for a salad dressing or a quick saute.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and have a muffin tin and a pastry brush on hand.
Working with 1 sheet of filo at a time, lay it on a counter top lined with a silicone baking mat or a large sheet of plastic wrap.
Very lightly brush the filo with the olive oil from the confit cherry tomatoes. Fold the sheet in half and brush it lightly again. Repeat the fold twice more (into eighths) to form the sheet into a small rectangle.
Tuck the filo rectangle into one of the muffin tins, pressing it into the bottom and as evenly as you can up the sides. Repeat to fill the rest of the muffin tin.
Bake the filo tartlet cups until golden brown, about 12 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and repeat with the remaining filo dough.
Fill each of the tartlet cups with 1 scant teaspoon of the ricotta or goat cheese filling. Top with 3 to 4 cherry tomatoes strained from the olive oil and garnish with additional fresh herbs and flake sea salt.
You can use this same technique to preserve fresh roma or paste tomatoes as well.
Copyright 2021 Lynne Curry