Tomato Basil Tartines


Ryan and I are already crossing items off our list. We had one of those lovely weekends. Leisurely breakfasts, friends from near and far, sweet family, succulents, long walks in the park. We even watched our 7-year-old nephew score two soccer goals at his tournament. But come Monday morning, and I’m TIRED. I don’t know if we were too busy this weekend or if I’m just 36 weeks pregnant. I imagine it’s a combination of both.

We had some friends and family over to our house on Saturday, and I made a few simple dishes to share with them. I’m finding, already, that simplicity is KEY. Ryan and I had talked about making soft pretzels for our party, but when I thought about boiling pots of water, parchment lined baking sheets, and the endless rolling of dough, I vetoed the idea. Instead, I made these simple yet delicious tomato basil tartines.


I bought a basil plant from Whole Foods a few weeks ago, and I’ve taken  pleasure in nurturing its growth. We have an immense yard that needs an immense amount of work, but my little basil plant is completely manageable. And so even though our backyard is half-dirt, half-weed, I still claim a green thumb. Growing basil is remarkable for many reasons, but I love that I can clip off a few leaves when needed (and not drive to the store to buy a 4 dollar packet of herbs).

And this baguette? Well, Ryan and I were lucky enough to move onto a cul-de-sac with wonderful neighbors. The owner of La Baguette (my very favorite bakery in Colorado Springs) lives just three doors down. The baguettes and the croissants that he sells each weekday and Saturday morning are as close to Paris as I can get right now. And he and his wife happen to be incredibly kind and gracious.


So buy yourself a basil plant, make good friends with a baker, and put together these simple tomato and basil tartines on a summer afternoon. They make perfect appetizers for a light lunch or dinner. I had a hard time keeping production up with my friends’ appetites. Flavorful yet not overpowering, these tartines make the best of summer produce.


Tomato Basil Tartines

*Yields 24 tartines

1 baguette, sliced thin (I always ask my baker to do this for me…saves time and the mess)

2-4 tablespoons butter, softened

1 carton of grape tomatoes, sliced thin

8 thick slices of provolone cheese

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I used a wonderful basil infused oil)

10-12 small basil leaves, chopped

Arrange sliced baguette pieces on a platter or serving plates. Spread softened butter over each piece of bread. Cut each piece of provolone into four smaller pieces. You can use a decorative round cookie cutter if desired. Place cheese on top of butter and bread. Arrange sliced tomatoes and chopped basil on each tartine. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and serve immediately.


Anecdotes and Apple Cores

40 thoughts on “Tomato Basil Tartines

  1. sallybr

    Simplicity is really everything! I used to give dinner parties that were so involved, every dish demanded special attention, and in the end I would be happy, but exhausted.

    it’s all about company and having fun – the simpler, the better.

  2. Pam

    I agree, simplicity is in order for you! Actually, I am doing that myself now for company or not. Your tartines look divine, and you are so lucky to have “bread bakers” for neighbors! And Colorado Springs…!!!

  3. Becky

    Sometimes simplicity is the very best, especially when you are 36 wks. pregnant. Simplicity is often best with a new baby as well:) Your simple tartines are a wonderful way to celebrate the arrival of summer.

  4. Sarah

    Summer food is my most favorite because it lends itself to simplicity. When it comes to flavor, fresh ingredients don’t need much help to be remarkable, as I’m sure these tartines are. I can’t believe you’re 36 weeks! Lucille is going to be here in no time, and before we know it, she’s going to be in all of these pictures baking alongside you. I can’t wait. :)

  5. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking

    I love easy, elegant appetizers like these beautiful tartines! They look so delicious and fuss-free. I think I’d drizzle a bit of balsamic on top, too! Thanks for sharing, Monet. I can’t believe you’ve only got a few weeks to go!

  6. Annie

    That’s what I’m missing right now-a basil plant! I usually have one by now. I can’t believe you’re still going so strong with little moments of exhaustion at 36 weeks! You are going to be such a great mom. How lucky to live by a baker! Every simple part sounds and looks so good this time of year. Have a great week!

  7. TheKitchenLioness

    Monet, your tomato-basil-tartines look so elegant! I love the way you presented them me when I say that “rest is the key” right now and for the coming weeks – I am so glad that you enjoy the “baby tea”, it is meant to be comforting and I always enjoy sipping a cup of really good tea myself!
    Take good care my friend!

  8. Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamily

    Wow! You’re already 36 weeks pregnant? ;} When I was that far along I was pretty much lounging around most of the day.

    Yup, simpicity is a very, very good thing when you are pregnant. These must have been a perfect light meal/snack.
    Gorgeous photos btw!


  9. Eileen

    These little guys sound delicious, and definitely perfect for low-effort party food. Growing herbs at home is so worth it, isn’t it? Take care of yourself–maybe with some naps! :)

  10. Jessie

    These are adorable, Monet! I especially love how you cut the provolone with cute cookie cutters – it adds so much to the presentation. I can see these as appetizers at our next dinner party.

    I’m so glad you had a nice weekend – ours was full of driving but relaxing all the same. Simplicity really is key. Sometimes we want to make the pretzels – and sometimes gorgeous little tartines hit the spot :)

  11. Catherine

    Dear Monet, The weekend sounds like it was full and satisfying.
    I think you are tired from excitement, being 36 weeks and anticipation.
    You are making the most of every moment. I am happy for you.

    I love planting basil too. It is expensive and there is nothing like growing it yourself and being able to have the basil whenever you need or just desire it.

    These snacks look delish and healthy too. Perfect.
    Blessings dearest, Catherine xo

  12. Ashley

    So simple and yet such a perfect combination. I really need to grow basil again this year – we’ve been so busy that I always forget. Nothing beats fresh basil that you’ve grown yourself : )

  13. Wendy Irene

    What a lovely idea to keep it simple. When you said Whole Foods I can’t help but wish we had one near us. I love just walking through it. The store is so vibrant and beautiful. When I lived in Vancouver we had one but in Idaho we don’t and I miss it. Great job making time for the important things!

  14. Nami | Just One Cookbook

    So cute!!! I like the idea of cutting out the cheese. It shows the extra effort and care. :) Oh definitely combination of two, so have a good rest before delivery day! But trust me, you have more time to relax now than later… first month is still relaxed as baby sleeps most of the time, so save your energy for the 2nd month! :) Pinned!

  15. Joanne

    Sometimes simplicity is just as good, if not BETTER than the more complicated stuff. Case in point – these tartines! Holy yum!

  16. Nancy @ gottagetbaked

    Simple is the best when you use quality ingredients and allow the flavours to shine through. Your tartines look delicious and your photos are beautiful. You’re so lucky to live down the street from a baker! I adore the jars you have your plants in. Too bad I have the black thumb of death – I tried growing herbs on my balcony last year (including basil) and they all died, despite people telling me that it’s so easy to grow herbs. I really showed them!

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  19. Whitney S.

    My MIL used to work at (maybe even manage?) La Baguette. I think my husband even put in a little time there. MIL brought pastries all the way to Texas for our Wedding day brunch. The chocolate croissants are just the best.

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