Pastry – 300 grams plain flour/standard grade flour/all-purpose flour – 1 teaspoon salt – 2 teaspoon black pepper – 2 teaspoon sweet basil – 165 grams butter – 5-10 tablespoons cold water Tomato Filling – 250 grams cottage chees – 1 egg – 50 grams grated parmesan – 100 grams grated cheddar – 2 teaspoon sweet basil – 2 teaspoons sweet basil – 2 teaspoons sweet basil – 400 grams cherry tomatoes (4 to 5 medium tomatoes)
Step 1 - Whisk together the flour, salt, and herbs for the pastry. Cube the cold butter and toss it into the flour. Using your fingers or a pastry knife, rub or cut the butter into the flour until you are left with pea-sized chunks of butter.
Step 2 - Add in the ice-cold water a tablespoon or two at a time and stir until you have a shaggy dough. Take note that some pieces of the flour will still be dry.
Step 3 - Turn the dough onto the kitchen counter, pat it together to form a rough rectangle. Using a knife or bench scraper, cut the dough into thirds and fold the outer edges on the middle section. Press down using your hands or a rolling pin until the dough is about 3cm thick. Repeat the process twice more. This laminates the dough. The dough will also become more cohesive during this process. Pat the dough into a rough rectangle and wrap in plastic wrap (cling film) and place in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
Step 4 - In a large mixing bowl, stir together the cottage cheese, parmesan, cheddar, 2 teaspoons of sweet basil (or herb of choice), with a dash of salt and pepper. Slice the tomatoes in half if using cherry tomatoes, or to a thickness of about 1 cm, sprinkle with salt and let rest for 15 minutes to draw out the excess water. Place the tomatoes on a paper towel and pat dry until most of the water has been removed.
Step 5 - Remove the pastry from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature for about 15 minutes before rolling out on a floured surface to approximately 0.5cm thick, and about 45cm in diameter. While rolling out your dough, turn the dough 90 degrees quite often and add a dusting of more flour to prevent sticking. Step 6 - Preheat the oven to 200°C or 180°C fans assisted. Place the rolled dough onto a large baking sheet (lined with baking paper to ensure it doesn't stick), or place it into a 30cm cast iron skillet. You can trim the edges of the pastry if you want a more uniform look.
Step 7 - Place the cheese filling in the bottom pastry, and spread it across all the bottom. If using a baking sheet, spread the filling into roughly a 30cm circle. Then top the filling with the tomatoes. Fold the edges of the pastry over the filling. Bake the galette for about 45 minutes or until the pastry is a deep golden brown. Rotate halfway through if necessary. Allow the galette to cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving.