Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Tomato Basil Torta

I enjoy sharing Christmas cheer.  Here's a holiday torta that you can share with friends, neighbors, or start your New Year's Eve party with.  Merry Christmas and Happy 2014 all!

Tomato Basil Torta |

All you need to do is layer it up in a springform pan and chill it well before serving.

Tomato Basil Torta |

Tomato Basil Torta


  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened 
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/3 cups sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
  • 2 (3-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened and divided
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Vegetable cooking spray
  • Garnishes: fresh rosemary sprigs, sun-dried tomatoes
  • Crackers or baguette slices


  1. Beat 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, butter, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Set aside.
  2. Process dried tomatoes in a food processor until chopped. Add 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, tomato paste, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; process until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Spoon into a bowl, and set aside. Wipe container of food processor clean.
  3. Process garlic and next 4 ingredients in food processor until chopped. Add Parmesan cheese, remaining 3-ounce package cream cheese, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt; pulse just until blended, stopping to scrape down sides.
  4. Spray a 6-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Spread 1/2 cup butter mixture evenly on bottom of springform pan. Layer with half of tomato mixture, 1/2 cup butter mixture, and half of basil mixture; top with 1/2 cup butter mixture. Repeat layers with remaining tomato mixture, 1/2 cup butter mixture, and remaining basil mixture. Top with remaining butter mixture. Cover with plastic wrap; chill at least 8 hours.
  5. Run a knife gently around edge of pan to loosen sides. Remove sides of pan; carefully remove bottom of pan, and place layered spread on a serving tray. Garnish, if desired. Serve with crackers or baguette slices.
Enjoy the holidays all,


  1. What a beautiful appetizer for a party. Love the red Christmas color. Hope you and yours had a wonderful Christmas! Sending hugs from Nebraska!

  2. Thanks Julie, same to you! I am visiting soon to see what you've got going for New Year's Eve...

  3. My last Bird Lady Pin of the year! Wooohooo! (Unless, of course, you manage to post today.) We were just talking about you on Sunday. I can't remember which recipe we were talking about, but I casually mentioned it was "gnee".(Not Renee... we always say "gnee" when we're talking about you.) The rest of them didn't get it until we added "Singing With Birds". Even my husband knows you by that name. You're FAMOUS.

    Now, Hi Ho Hi Ho off to pin I go.

  4. This looks so festive with the red and green layers! What a wonderful holiday party recipe. Saved.

  5. I have had this commercially prepared but never made my own! This is so beautiful and festive. I would sit and eat nearly the whole thing myself! Appetizers are my great weakness.
    I hope 2014 is a wonderful and prosperous year for you!


Thanks so much for leaving a comment. I read each and every one and they make me sing! renée