Sunday, August 23, 2009

Five Late Season Tomato Recipes

Or, get 'em while you can!

Tomato and Watermelon Salad with Feta and Basil

This salad is particularly beautiful if the watermelon and tomatoes are different colors. There is a small, golden watermelon that is perfect for this salad.
This serves one- multiplies easily.

bed of arugula
1/4 small watermelon, cut into bite sized wedges
1 tomato, cut in bite sized wedges
1/4 small red onion, very thinly sliced
a couple of leaves of basil. torn or julienned
2 oz feta
sea salt
drizzle of olive oil

Layer ingredients, and serve.

Ten Minute Gazpacho

I make this lovely soup before I go to work in the morning- with a food processor, it is so simple!

coarsely chop:
2 large tomatoes, cored
1 small red onion
1 clove garlic
1-2 cucumbers, peeled
2 sweet peppers (Jimmy Nardellos are my favorite)
1 jalapeno pepper
about 5 leaves of basil
2 TBS. red wine or white balsamic vinegar
2TBS. olive oil
salt and pepper
1-2 cups tomato or veggie juice, to your taste

Add veggies to your food processor one at a time, pulsing a few times between additions. I like doing them in the order I have listed here because I want my tomatoes, onion and garlic finely chopped, and my cukes and peppers coarsely chopped. I like mine thicker as well, so I use less tomato juice.

Fried Green Tomatoes

This is the batter we use for our Stuffed Squash Blossoms, and have found it is delicious on fish as well.

Mix in small bowl:
1 Cup of flour
1/2 Cup cornstarch
1 Cup beer
1 egg
salt and pepper to taste

3-4 green tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick

Heat Canola oil for deep frying

Dredge each slice in batter, then place in oil, turning once. These fry quickly.

Eat warm with pesto mayonnaise.

Stuffed Tomatoes
We found these great "stuffing tomatoes" at The St. Stephen's Market and knew that we had to put them to good use. Stuffing tomatoes are hollow on the inside like a pepper, and have a firmer outer layer. These were even shaped a bit like a bell pepper, but don't be fooled they are indeed tomatoes. I found a delicious and quick recipe from Alice Waters that is perfectly suited for the busy, seasonal cook. If you can't find stuffing tomatoes Alice actually recommends the Early Girl variety as an ideal "sweet late-season tomato" for stuffing.

You can peel these tomatoes first by dipping each one in a pot of boiling water for just about five seconds, but we skipped this step and found that in the case of stuffing tomatoes it was unnecessary.

Pre-heat oven to 375

1. Rinse about 5 to 6 small to medium sized tomatoes and cut across the top just as you would a bell pepper. Clean the inside of any seeds. Salt and pepper the cavity.

2. Make a filling of fresh bread crumbs using a heavier bread , fresh chopped garlic, and plenty of fresh basil. Slice off a few slices of the focaccia and tear them into large chunks. I used a food processor, tossed in the bread pieces, a few cloves of pealed and coarsely chopped garlic and a heavy fist full of washed basil leaves. Run the processor until the mixture is uniform in size with all ingredients mixed through out. I used the rosemary and onion focaccia from the vendor Bread for The People, and found this to work perfectly for the stuffing tomatoes. Since the stuffing tomatoes have less moisture than a regular tomato the focaccia was helpful and the seasonings within the focaccia worked great.

3. Fill each with the stuffing mixture, packing it down as you go and mounding it up a bit on top.

4. Pack the tomatoes together tightly in a shallow corning wear type baking dish. Drizzle each one lightly with olive oil. I also topped each one off with a little freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Bake for about 30 minutes.

Oven Roasted Tomatoes

We love this recipe for it's simplicity and versatility. Roasted tomatoes taste wonderfully rich and can be used as a simple appetizer atop a slice of focaccia or as bruschetta. They also can be added to canned tomatoes for a delicious sauce, or placed upon a homemade pizza with caramelized onions and olives. Roma and other smaller tomatoes work best for this recipe. This is adapted from a combination of a few recipes. This temperature works well and since it is the same as for the stuffed tomatoes, both dishes can be prepared at the same time and served as appetizers. Pre-heat oven to 375 (Cook time: About 1 hour)

Pealing the tomatoes by dipping them in boiling water for just a few seconds makes for a much nicer eating experience in this case, but it is optional. Slice tomatoes length wise, remove seeds.

There are several ways to roast tomatoes and get great flavor, my favorite however is to use a heavier, shallow corning wear type dish and cover the bottom of the dish with a thin layer of olive oil. Add herbs to the oil (we used whole basil sprigs) and garlic slices. Place a single layer of tomato slices on top. Season with salt and pepper and lightly drizzle with olive oil. Cook covered for the first 20 minutes or so and then uncovered for another 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.


  1. The salad looks (and I'm sure it tastes) delicious!

    I love stuffed tomatoes, in fact I have published a very easy recipe on rice stuffed tomatoes.

    PS: Your stuffed tomato recipe also works perfectly with artichoke.

  2. Shannon made the Tomato and Watermelon salad for us for dinner last night and it was delicious! Not a speck left on the plate!