Thursday, August 9, 2012
Baked Tomato Salad
It's official. It's officially too hot to exist. We are living the dog days of summer I tell you. My hair is frizzy and makeup is literally melting off my face. Not my best look. But the sun is shining it's bright rays in my window every morning and even though it was 90 degrees at 5 pm this evening, I strangely feel like Fall is just around the corner. Or is that wishful thinking?
These last few weeks of summer are not doubt the hottest, but they are also the BEST for tomatoes. Bright red = summer sweet! I have a cherry tomato plant on my deck that has been growing like crazy! I don't know why it's so satisfying to pick cherry tomatoes and throw them right into a salad, but it is. It really is!
For bigger dishes, like this baked tomato salad I purchased vine ripe tomatoes from Trader Joe's. Does anyone else love the smell of the vine? Am I the only one doing that in the market? : )
The tomatoes were perfect, but I was really in it for the box. Is that not the cutest? I saved it and it's now on my counter with lemons and herbs in it. Looove!
This salad is supposed to be served cold. I've served it warm, room temperature, and cold. It's all good. Try it!
Recipe from Susan Branch's The Summer Book.
large, ripe summer tomatoes
salt & freshly ground pepper
fresh basil, chopped
minced parsley (fresh or dried)
1 jar roasted red peppers
dry bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Choose a baking dish for the number of servings you desire. Put a good film of olive oil in the bottom of the dish. Slice tomatoes 1/4 inch and arrange in a single layer.
Salt and pepper lightly. Sprinkle with pinch of parsley, a pinch of basil, then a layer of the red peppers.
I got these Fire Roasted Red Peppers from Trader Joe's (my new favorite store!!!).
Tracy really knows what she's talking about! Have you ever heard of Cookie Butter? Well, it's real. And it's at Trader Joe's. And it's amazing! But that's another blog post entirely.
I cut them in strips and layered them over the tomatoes.
Repeat the process - tomatoes, seasonings, and peppers.
Add one more layer of tomatoes and seasonings. Drizzle with olive oil.
Cover lightly with a handful of breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese.
Bake 20 minutes. Chill well before servings.
Serve with warm crusty bread to mop up all the tomato juices!
You can always be creative and change things up. Add garlic, mozzerella cheese, or even cilantro is delicious in this.