Tag Archives: Tomato

BLT Bites

3 Mar

If I had seen this recipe on my own, I would have cruised on past because it looks a bit intricate and timely. That assessment is true; however, the taste is FABULOUS.

My friend Mel was having her Halloween party and had asked me to make a couple items. I offered a few ideas of my own and then she requested that I make this one and proceeded to send me the recipe.

When I read that I would have to stuff cherry tomatoes, I thought they were nuts. And it definitely took a little bit of time, but it was SO worth it. The bacon/mayo mixture couldn’t be simpler to make. And yes, I cheated this time by buying pre-made bacon because I was making 4 things in 5 hours and didnt have time to fry a pound of bacon. But it’s good to know that this is a possibility!!

And I figured a way to stuff them a bit easier – use the 1/8 teaspoon of my measuring spoon set. Made it so much better!

The taste is just amazing. And they were one of the FIRST things to disappear at the party! They are tiny and people love to pop them in their mouths…And the bacon-flavor just hits you!

I highly recommend this recipe – although I think it’s best for a small party/get-together so that you don’t kill yourself in assembly. Or you could make this and stuff larger tomatoes as a lunch!

BLT Bites

Ingredients:

  • 16 to 20 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup chopped green onions
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley

Directions:

  • Cut a thin slice off of each tomato top. Scoop out and discard pulp. Invert the tomatoes on a paper towel to drain.
  • In a small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Spoon into tomatoes.
  • Refrigerate for several hours.

Yield: 16-20 appetizer servings.

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Rustic Roasted Tomato Salsa

17 Feb

Who doesnt love salsa? Seriously…..find me someone who doesnt LOVE salsa.

Robb has the Rick Bayless “Mexican Everyday” cookbook. It has become one of our mexican cooking bibles.

We’ve tried a couple of his salsas, and we landed on this one as being the best. (I usually end up adding a bit more heat to it, too – as you can see by the additional random spicy peppers in the pan above)

This tastes divine – you can taste the roasted garlic and peppers. You can taste the freshness of the ingredients. And it’s simple to make. I made it for Mexican Supper Club back in October and it was a huge hit. I made a regular batch and then I made a SPICY batch for John and I.

Salsa is already a party food staple. Why not make your own at home? It’s so much healthier for you and you can modify it however you like!

Dip into it!!!!

Rustic Roasted Tomato Salsa

Ingredients:

  • 2 jalapenos (or 4 serranos/1 habanero)
  • 3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • ½ cup finely chopped white onion
  • One 15 oz can diced tomatoes- fire roasted, in juice
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1-2 tsp of fresh lime juice
  • ½ tsp Salt

Directions:

Remember to wear gloves when you handle/chop the spicy peppers – dont want to burn your skin or touch your eye later on!

Set small skillet over medium heat. Lay the chiles and garlic in the skillet and dry roast until soft and blotchy black in spots, about 10 minutes for the chiles and 15 mins for the garlic.

While chiles and garlic roast, scoop onion into strainer and rinse under cold water. Shake off excess water and pour into medium bowl.

Pull stems off the roasted chiles and peel papery skins off the garlic. Scoop them into the food processor and pulse until they are finely chopped. Add the tomatoes with their juice, re-cover and pulse a few more times, until the mixture is as coarse or smooth as you want your salsa to be.

Pour the mixture into the bowl with the onion. Add cilantro and stir thoroughly.

Thin with water if necessary to give salsa an easier consistency (I typically do not do this). Taste and season with lime juice and salt – I tend to go heavy on these two items.

NOTE: If making salsa ahead of time, refrigerate and don’t add onions and cilantro until ready to serve.

End of Summer Garden

29 Sep

It’s the end of the summer….And that makes me unbelievably sad. It took me 3 weeks, but I have finally accepted it. And now I am ready for fall!

I had a great gardening year this summer. All four of my tomato plants produced a lot of fruit, and my basil has never been bigger.

The garden from the backside

Above is the garden from the backside- jalapeno on the bottom, tomatoes along the right, WALL of basil in the back!! Oh and my little mint pot on the left 🙂

Full view in front of garden

Above and below you can see how tall the basil is. I am roughly 5 ft 4 so you can see that some of the basil is over my head.

Basil is 5 feet tall

Below are some of the Early Girl tomatoes, and in the background you can see some green romas.

Fresh tomatoes on the vine

From the farmers market…..

Some great farmers market heirloom finds….

This is my FAVORITE heirloom tomato ever……the Ox Heart. It is most delicious with not that many seeds. Perfect with some kosher salt.

My favorite – the OxHeart

I’ve had a bowlful of these on my counter since July……it’s great to just pop a couple in your mouth whenever you want.

Bowlful of Babies

Sadly, I have started to pluck off future flowerblooms from my tomato plants since they’ll likely never get a chance at full bloom. But it’s been a great summer and I look forward to next April when I am consumed with selecting next summer’s plants and getting the garden ready to plant 🙂

Le Sigh………bring on the fall apple and pumpkin flavors!

Cherry Tomato Salad with Buttermilk-Basil Dressing

21 Aug

Are your cherry and grape tomatoes coming in like gangbustersright now?

Ingredients

I am picking at least 7-10 a day and they add up so fast. Sometimes I give them out to friends and co-workers, and other times I am able to consume them on a daily basis.

Dressing and Tomatoes

I was able to make this delicious and healthy salad out of my cherry and grape tomatoes with only 5+ ingredients. It is creamy, without any cream. In a weird way, it could be a nice substitute for a potato salad, too!

Freshly Dressed

This salad is incredibly easy to put together and takes hardly any time. It would be an awesome addition to any summer picnic or BBQ.

Closeup

I ate these so fast I couldnt get a pic

Cherry Tomato Salad with Buttermilk-Basil Dressing

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups different-colored cherry/grape tomatoes, halved if large
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3 tblsp thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Put the cherry tomatoes in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss.

In another bowl, whisk together buttermilk, sour cream, basil, shallot, and garlic. Season with pepper.

Drizzle the dresing over the tomatoes and toss.

Heirloom Tomato Pie

13 Aug

I fell in love with this recipe immediately when I saw it in one of last summer’s Food Network Magazines. I made it for a family get-together last summer. It was such a big hit, I kept it in the repertoire and decided to bring it back for Supper Club dinner recently.

Crust ingredients

It’s important before you begin ANYTHING else, to cut up all of your tomatoes, lay them out, and salt them generously on each side. Allow them to drain for a lengthy amount of time. I let them drain for more than an hour while I made everything else.

Salted Tomatoes

I prepared to make the cornmeal crust. It’s so simple to make – it all comes together quickly in the food processor! Then you just have to roll it out. The directions say to let it chill in the fridge for a while, but I usually skip that step. I guess it depends on how quickly you move and how “workable” the dough is.

Food processor crust

Ready to bake

You have to pre-bake this crust with pie weights so that the crust doesnt bubble up. You can either buy pie weights in the store or you can do what I did and buy a bag of dried beans in the supermarket 🙂 You can re-use the beans for all of your pie endeavors!

Pie weights while baking

Crust is ready

Now to make the filling…..

Filling ingredients

How are those tomatoes doing?? Flipped them over and salted the other side. I got 2 heirlooms from my favorite farm down the road, Skippack Creek Farm. The rest came from my garden!

Salted Tomatoes

The filling comes together so easily. Sautee, the onions, chop up the herbs, and combine everything with the cheese.

Filling mixture

Filling laid in the pie

The fun part is arranging the tomatoes on top of the filling! I like to make a pattern and distribute the colors as evenly as possible. DORK!!!

Tomato Design

Closeup

I know that the recipe says to bake the pie as-is with the tomatoes on top, but I can never resist sprinkling some manchego cheese on top halfway through baking. Come on, everyone knows – the more cheese, the merrier!

With this crust, I have noticed that you definitely need to check it halfway through baking. It gets very brown, and to prevent from burning, you have to line the crust edges with tin foil. It’s a pain in the neck to wrap little pieces of foil around the crust, but it’s imperative in order not to burn your crust.

Look at how beautiful this is!!!!!!!!

Gorgeous

Here you can see what the inside looks like.

Inside of pie

This pie is a real treat. It’s definitely a little bit of work, but it’s a special side dish to bring to a summer/early fall dinner. It will be the highlight of ANY meal, trust me!

Heirloom Tomato Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup yellow cornmeal
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • ¾ cup plus 3 tblsp shredded manchego cheese
  • 2 tblsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 ¼ pounds mixed heirloom tomatoes
  • Kosher salt
  • ¾ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ¼ cup mayo
  • 3 tblsp breadcrumbs
  • 3 tblsp chopped fresh chives
  • 3 tblsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

Directions:

Make the crust:

Pulse the flour, cornmeal, and salt in a food processor. Add the butter and 3 tblsp manchego cheese. Pulse until the mixture looks like coarse meal with pea-size bits of butter. Drizzle in 4 tblsp ice water and pulse until the dough comes together. Add 1 more tblsp ice water if necessary. Turn out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and pat into a disk. Wrap and refrigerate until firm – about 15 to 30 minutes.

Put the dough between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll into a 13-inch round. Transfer the dough to a 9.5” deep-dish-style pie plate. Fold the overhang under itself and crimp the edges. Pierce the bottom of the crust all over with a fork. Refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat overn to 350.

Line the crust with foil, then fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake until the edges are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove the foil and the beans/weights and continue baking until golden all over, 10-15 more minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.

Make the filling:

Heat 1 tblsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring until golden, about 15 minutes. Let cool. Meanwhile, thinly slice tomatoes, toss with 1 tsp kosher salt in a colander. Let drain, gently tossing occasionally, about 30 minutes.

Increase the oven temperature to 375. Combine the remaining ¾ cup manchego, mozzarella, mayo, breadcrumbs, 2 tblsp each of chives and parsley and thyme, ¼ tsp each of kosher salt and pepper, and the sautéed onion in a bowl. Spread in the crust. Arrange the tomatoes on top. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tblsp olive oil and season with pepper.

Bake until the tomatoes are browned, about 50 minutes. Top with remaining herbs.

Tomato Bounty – – – Corn and Tomato Salad

15 Jul

Look at all these tomatoes!!!!!

On Saturday morning after returning home from the Farmers Market, I saw an email from my favorite farmers down the road from me – Skippack Creek Farm. I get all of my tomatoes from them – and all of my herbs and vegetable plants from them in the beginning of the season. They are super nice and friendly and they run an organic farm. I love their produce – but I also love chatting with them and seeing them either at local farmers markets or their own farm stand!

Look at these 2 mutants

Mutant tomato show-down

As I was saying, I got an email from my friends saying that since I was one of their fave customers and they liked me so much, they wanted to give me a free bag of tomatoes!!! Um, YES PLEASE! Their tomatoes taste like bites of juicy heaven. I jumped on it. When I saw how much they were giving me, my mind started to wander thinking “what can i make? what can i make?”

Fresh, simple ingredients

I settled on meaty tomato sauce (which I’ve never made before, and I totally “wung” it without a recipe!) and a fresh Tomato Corn Salad. This corn salad is my mom’s recipe. She made it a couple times earlier in the season and we INHALED it at dinner!

Want to stick my face in there

This salad is so fresh and delicious and SIMPLE SIMPLE SIMPLE! It’s just a couple ingredients – and it’s completely customizable! You want to add beans? Add beans. You want to omit the jalapeno? Go for it. (In fact, my mom’s recipe does not include jalapeno – I added that)

Up Close and Vegetable

The best is if you used sweet corn, you will think there is sugar in this recipe. But there’s not! The sweet corn and the acids together give off a sweet taste that makes you want more!

Cant wait to eat this!

Corn and Tomato Salad

Ingredients:

  •                     3-4 roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped
  •                     4 ears corn, cooked
  •                     1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  •                     1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
  •                     2 cloves garlic, minced
  •                     1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
  •                     2 tblsp Red Wine Vinegar
  •                     1/4 cup olive oil
  •                     salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

Dice tomatoes, jalapeno, and onion. Cut kernels from cooled corn cobs. Add garlic, cilantro, salt, and pepper. Ad the red wine vinegar and olive oil and stir together! Serve cool or room temperature.

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