tomato toast

img_7392

Come late August, early September, tomatoes become an endangered species.  They are still around, but slowly starting to disappear, reminding you that soon enough the prominent real estate they’ve been holding will be relinquished to the apples and pumpkins of autumn.

But there is still time! Just a couple more weeks to soak up all the delicious sweet and savory tomatoeness.  And what better way to do that than by treating them with the utmost reverence?

img_7428

This is not fancy. Nor is it complex. In fact, it seems likely that a monkey could put this dish together.  But that doesn’t make it any less tasty.  A great recipe doesn’t always require that you have intensive skill in the kitchen, but should be something you may not have conceived of on your own.

The funny thing about how much I adore making this is that I used to be afraid of mayonnaise.  I loved it, I recognized its value and importance in my diet, but alas.  It irked me.  I couldn’t bring myself to use it.  Then someone made me tomato toast–and I was forever changed. I had to be able to make it for myself, because I was craving it constantly. It tasted like summer. So I faced my fears of mayonnaise. And I’ve never looked back.

img_7395

The moral of this slightly rambling story is that if you too love those late summer tomatoes (and herbs, the herbs in the mayo are important) and just want to savor them as long as possible, this is the dish for you.  Ridiculously easy and silly delicious, it is just the way to send these summer delights off in style.  Until next summer when they once again grace us with their abundance.

img_7431

Tomato Toast
serves 2

4 slices hearty, thick sliced multigrain bread
1/2 cup good mayonnaise (if you feel daring, make your own, I entrust you to the geniuses at serious eats for that)
1/2 teaspoon each of basil, chives, tarragon, and parsley, diced (or any combination there of that is to your liking)
A bunch of various colored tomatoes, in thick slices (since they come in all shapes and sizes, I leave it to you to determine how much is right. As these photos show, I tend to pile on as many as possible)
Salt and pepper to taste, extra chives for garnish

  1. Combine your herbs and mayo until well combined.
  2. Toast the breads, lightly.
  3. Smear the mayo, on the toasts.
  4. Arrange the tomato slices atop the toasts. Cover with salt, pepper, and extra chives. Eat immediately. Savor summer.
Advertisements
tomato toast

caprese & roasted garlic bruschetta

IMG_6251

The tomatoes are coming.  You can see them popping up here and there, in glorious shades of yellow and orange, and even bits of red. They will continue gain glory as the summer progresses. It’s all terribly exciting.

IMG_6244

Tomatoes tend to pair well with a lot of different flavors since they somehow manage to be sweet and acidic and unique all at once. However one of the simplest, and most pleasurable ways to enjoy them is unadorned with some basil and mozzarella. And bread, obviously. Because bread makes everything better. You add roasted garlic and it just becomes aggressively addictive.

IMG_6246

Sometimes you have to just eat this standing up at the kitchen counter, because to take it all the way to the table is just too long to wait.

IMG_6248

Caprese & Roasted Garlic Bruschetta

The caprese piece of this is as you expect, but the roasted garlic is the secret weapon that sets it apart. It’s such an easy way to add another element to an already delicious situation.

3 medium beefsteak tomatoes (or 2 quarts of cherry tomatoes), diced
2 large balls fresh mozzarella, cubed
fresh basil to taste
1 head of garlic
1 baguette, sliced
fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, salt & pepper to taste

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Slice the head of garlic horizontally and place on a baking sheet flesh side up and drizzle with olive oil.  Cook until fragrant and slightly browned. Set aside.
2. Dice tomatoes and mozzarella, mix together in a bowl with salt, pepper, chopped fresh basil, and balsamic vinegar.
3. Slice the baguette (or other equally delicious bread) and drizzle with olive oil and toast in oven until just browned on the edges. Dig the roasted garlic cloves out of the husks and spread one or two cloves on each slice of bread (the beauty of roasted garlic is that it becomes creamy and takes on a nutty, dreamy flavor. If you don’t like it though, you can omit it or use butter).
4. Top the slices with the tomato and mozzarella mixture, and eat immediately while the bread is warm and the mix is cool.

IMG_6250

caprese & roasted garlic bruschetta

cheesy farro with corn and tomato

Sometimes I get over excited at farmers’ markets.  Everything is in season! Everything is beautiful! I love vegetables!

IMG_4953This enthusiasm often leads to my kitchen overflowing with an abundance of produce, and often me staring at it wondering how I plan to eat it all.  This week, I wound up with a serious amount of cherry tomatoes and some sweet local corn.

IMG_4961

This simple side dish (slash vegetarian entrée) barely cooks the vegetables, and combines them with hearty farro to stick to your ribs. There is also cheese, because obviously.

IMG_4958

So if you too tend to overindulge at the sight of vibrantly colored vegetables…give this a try.  Heck, throw in some zucchini.  Add in some bell peppers. GO CRAZY.

IMG_4965

Cheesy farro with corn & tomatoes 

1 cup farro
1/2 a yellow onion, diced
pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
2 ears of corn, kernels removed from cob
1/2 shredded cheese (variety of your choice, I went for a nice monterey jack blend)
Salt & Pepper to taste

1. cook faro. 1 cup farro to 2 cups water, bring to a boil for 12 minutes, and drain.  Reserve 2 tbs cooking water.

2. sauté onions over medium heat in with olive oil. Once translucent, add in corn, tomatoes, cooked farro, and reserved cooking liquid. Lower to a simmer.

3. stir in cheese until it’s good and melted.

4. add salt & pepper to taste. consume.

This is great alongside grilled chicken or swordfish, but definitely holds up on its own.

IMG_4966

cheesy farro with corn and tomato