I say: carpe diem!
This is the time to go all out on tomatoes. Our produce bins are brimming with them... but not for long. In the blink of an eye, you’ll be back to those mealy, tasteless supermarket tomatoes. So eke out every opportunity to use sweet, juicy market tomatoes over the next few weeks. Tired of tomato salads?
Here are five great ways to use the gorgeous tomatoes – heirloom, cherry, beefsteak – available right now.
1. Make a tomato tart. This is an August staple for lunch or dinner in France. There are so many variations. Some include goat cheese, others feature Dijon mustard. This one is made with caramelized onions and the crust is ruggedly rustic. Almost all include fresh basil cuttings, also abundant at the market right now. For a twist, try these tomato tartes tatins by the late, great Patricia Wells.
2. The Greeks like to stuff their giant heirlooms or beefsteaks with ground lean beef, or lamb or pork, in a traditional dish called gemista.
3. Make tomato confit. This is a French slow, slow cooking technique more typically associated with meats, specifically duck (duck confit is a duck that has been slow cooked in its own fat.) But you can confit tomatoes in olive oil. As the tomatoes cook, they release some of their juices yielding tomatoes so flavorful you will want to put them atop everything, from slices of Wave Hill focaccia for easy bruschetta, to your favorite La Trafila pasta, to your morning market eggs. As an added bonus, the oil left in the roasting pan is just as flavorful, and versatile, as the actual tomatoes.
4. Make yellow tomato gazpacho with cilantro oil (from Arlotta Food Studio) and avocado.
5. Tired of the plain-Jane Harriet the Spy tomato sandwiches? Try an E-L-T- egg, lettuce, tomato sandwich made with pain de mie from Bien Cuit Bakery.
Noble Pies is thinking along these lines. They are bringing lots of tomato pies this week. And, Eltee’s Goods specializes in heirloom tomato goodness in a jam form. Other rotating vendors to look out for this weekend? The refreshing ice tea blends from White Pine Community Farm, fabulous fungi from Four Wall Farm.
Why not buy a pretty ceramic bowl from Chloe Sikirica Pottery to showcase your tomatoes on your kitchen counter?
See you at the market!