Hooks for Cooks™

Too Many Tomatoes!

September 12th, 2009

Too Many Tomatoes!Thanks to Seattle’s warm sunny summer, I now have a tomato glut!! Indeed, that’s a great thing, but it’s made my brain think harder than ever.

When you harvest 10 to 15 pounds of tomatoes every couple days, it’s hard to eat that many fresh. So, what have I been doing? Here’s a brief
round up:

Roasted Tomatoes–Rather than let the ruby red orbs sit on the counter, I grabbed my large Le Creuset roasting pan last week, spread the tomatoes in a single layer, added some olive oil, salt and basil. I then roasted at about 400 F for forty minutes. This resulted in a thick puree. I didn’t bother straining the seeds and skins. I simply shoved it in a Luminarc mason jar and stored in the fridge. This roasted tomato sauce was glugged into a slow cooker veggie soup later in the week.

Tomato Au Gratin–My inlaws are here, and I decided to make a quick tomato au gratin to serve with some of our wild caught salmon last week. I grabbed my favorite enameled cast iron pan, sliced the tops off my golf-ball sized tomatoes. I then readied my food processor and added two ounces of parmeson, one piece of white bread, and a handful of fresh basil. I whizzed this for thirty seconds and spread the crumb mixture on top. A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and into the oven at 400 F. for 35 minutes. This tomato au gratin rivaled any you’d find in France.

Tomato Quiche–I was mucking around with a new pie crust recipe a few weeks ago and had a surplus of pie dough on hand. I rolled some dough and fit it into my glass Luminarc tart pan. I blind baked it for about 25 minutes in the oven and then sprinkled cherry tomatoes, basil and parmesan onto the crust once it cooled. I whisked a bunch of our freshly laid eggs and some cream, poured that over the tomatoes and baked. Voila, a quick quiche.

So, if you are faced with a glut of tomatoes or any vegetable for that matter, be thankful and just use it! For inspiration, consult cookbook indices and reliable online recipe sites such as Taste of Home and Gourmet.

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