I'm not sure this pie ever really made it out of the kitchen entirely. The spicy-BLT like dish was so enticing, that we had to keep it on the down-low, sneaking our friends slices so they could all have a taste. Brent liked it so much, he said he wanted it to be his birthday cake for next year. It's good thing we laid down a strong pie base, for all the pickle back shots and square dancing and two-stepping that we'd get into later that night. Homesick Texan nails it yet again.
Tomato, Bacon & Jalapeño Pie
Adapted only slightly from Homesick Texan
For the filling:
1 1/2 lbs. heirloom tomatoes (a meaty variety is best), sliced
1 tsp. sea salt
3 c. (12 oz.) pepper jack cheese, shredded
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, seeded and sliced in rounds or diced
8 oz. bacon, cooked and diced
For the crust:
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. cornmeal
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
8 Tblsp. unsalted butter, chilled
3/4 c. buttermilk
1. Place sliced tomatoes in a colander and place the colander in a mixing bowl. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt and toss, then let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes so the juices drain.
2. Meanwhile, make the crust. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and pepper. using a pastry cutter or fork and knife, cut the chilled butter into the flour mixture until it is the consistency of cornmeal and peas. Stir in the buttermilk and mix well. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into an 11-inch circle.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a 9 or 10-inch cast iron skillet (you can use a normal pie pan if you don't have a skillet). Transfer the dough to the skillet and fit the crust, making sure it reaches the top of the pan all the way around.
4. Fill the pie by sprinkling and spreading half of the cheese along the crust. Layer in the tomato slices, garlic, jalapeño, and bacon, topping with the remaining cheese.
5. Place the skillet on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes until the crust and cheese are golden brown and filling is bubbling.
It is funny to think about this heavenly time and place when we here in DC and pretty much everywhere else along the East coast is getting slammed by Hurricane Sandy. I will say though, that while this pie was the perfect thing for an old-time party on the perfect fall day, it would also be just as good, maybe even better, as a storm party comfort food. Stay safe and dry and stocked in pie out there, folks.