Tomatoes All Day!
It's the start of September and while most of us (myself included) are ready to jump feet-first into apple picking, Fall foliage, PSL's, and sweater weather... many of us are left with an over abundance of tomatoes from our gardens, or noticing that the tomatoes at the grocery store or farmers market are in great abundance and looking delicious ripe and ready to eat.
Whether you are a green thumb and have an over-flowing garden or you are a lover of farmers markets and came home with a few too many pounds of tomatoes, than this journal entry is for you!
One of the most popular type of tomatoes are tiny but might grape and cherry tomatoes. I love when I have an abundance of these little guys because they make a delicious fresh tomato sauce. I created this recipe of Roasted Garlic and Tomato Sauce with Spaghetti after a trip to the Finger Lakes and a stop at a quaint and charming restaurant led to a delicious dinner of their roasted tomato sauce pasta special. Week later, I was craving the taste and tried my hand a re-creating the dish with a few little add-ons, like the addition of fresh basil leaves and the mild-briny flavor of halved Cerignola olives. If your cherry tomato plants are bursting at the seams or those pint of grape tomatoes from the market are waiting to be eaten, this is definitely the recipe to try!
Looking for a simple snack? Look no further than those grape tomatoes. This simple 4-
ingredient Tomato and Basil Bruschetta is a hit for cocktail hour, or can easily be used as topping for grilled chicken breasts or chicken cutlets to make an amazing Chicken Bruschetta dinner. It comes together in less than 15 minutes and can be prepped a day ahead (just hold off on adding the vinegar).
If vine-ripe tomatoes are what you have an abundance of, don't sell them short by just tossing them in a salad (although there is nothing wrong with a crisp fresh salad...I eat salads almost every day). I am slightly obsessed with roasting tomatoes. The flavor changes to this sweet yet tangy taste that is truly yummy. Roasting tomatoes is also a really good option when tomatoes may not be in their peek season, but you are craving their flavor. It can take some bitterness out that tends to settle in during the off-peak times of year. Sorry I got off on the flavor topic train.... getting back to cooking...
So, if you are looking for a simple and versatile side dish, turn to the bunch of vine-ripe tomatoes that you may have growing in your garden or have purchased for your local market and make these Baked Stuffed Tomatoes. Take these vine-ripe tomatoes cut off their tops and scoop out the inside. Then fill them up with a mixture of breadcrumbs, grated cheese, freshly ground black pepper and fresh herbs. After they are finished baking, top them off with some shaved Pecorino Romano cheese that will gently melt from the heat of freshly
baked tomatoes. You are left with a simple and delicious side dish for your dinner tonight or any day of the week. These go well with chicken cutlets, grilled pork chops, even a great side for a fish fillet. It is an extremely versatile side dish.
Oh, and Ttotal BONUS! This recipe is also prep-ahead worthy. You can stuff the tomatoes and refrigerate up to a day ahead. Now that's what I am talking about!
I truly hope that your summer was relaxing and rejuvenating and that the transition into the new school year has been a good for everyone.
I can't wait for you to try out this new recipes and enjoy them with your family and friends. Continue to stay healthy and be well. Cheers to the last days of Summer!