A Note about Tomatoes  from Patty

If you find you’re not using all your tomatoes, try roasting and freezing them.  I regularly roast up a batch going something like this:  Core and half a bunch of tomatoes.  Add some chopped onion and garlic. Jalapenos or poblanos are nice too if you like a little heat.  Pour few nice glugs of olive oil over the mix.  Sprinkle with salt.  Roast in the oven at 400 degrees until it seems a thickness you are happy with.  Let it cool and then pulse a few times in the food processor so the skins magically disappear.  I then freeze it in two cup batches in freezer bags to make soup or spaghetti sauce or ??? in the winter.  You can add fresh herbs too if you like.

5-Ingredient Marinated Tomatoes – 2-3 cups ( You don’t need cherry tomatoes, this works with any tomato cut into chunks, the more variety of tomatoes you use, the prettier the salad.  Consider adding a small chopped cucumber and a minced leek as well.  These marinated tomatoes are fantastic spooned over steamed green beans, sautéed greens and grilled fish or chicken.  Try it on top of avocado toast or eaten with a thick slice of golden toasted and buttered bread.  If you are still looking for ideas, try it in the quinoa salad link below.

  • 1 lb. cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered (or regular tomatoes cut into similar size chunks)
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon vinegar of your choice or lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. freshly minced herbs or a combo of herbs
  • Salt to taste, about ½ to ¾ tsp kosher salt

Toss tomatoes, grated garlic, olive oil, vinegar, herbs, and salt together in a small bowl.  Give the tomatoes at least 2-3 hours to rest, stirring occasionally.  Refrigerate if longer but bring to room temp before serving.

Andalusian Gazpacho Recipe

from Diane Clayton—adapted to the Midwest
Note from Diane: “I discovered this June that the Spanish are crazy for the blended variety, and they thicken it with breadcrumbs.  Yummy.”
Serves six

2 or 3 large tomatoes (about 2 lbs.)
Cucumber, peeled, chopped
Red or green pepper, seeded and chopped
Jalapeno, seeded and chopped
Onion, chopped
3-4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1-2 cloves garlic
5 tablespoons water (vary the amount according to the consistency you prefer)

Place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Sieve or strain the puree to remove seeds and skins.

Put soup back in blender and add:
4 or so slices white bread, decrusted and cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper

Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. Better in a day or so.

To make garlic croutons:
Diced cubes of day-old bread
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
Using a frying pan heat the oil gently and add the garlic, cook over fairly low heat watching it doesn’t burn. Turn down the heat and add the bread cubes. Cook slowly turning continually until golden brown.
Serve soup with crouton. Also may add avocado cubes, chopped tomato, hard-boiled egg, parsley, cracked pepper.

Brown Rice Tabouli

This recipe comes from our Spring Hill cookbook and was contributed by Kathleen Morton.

3 cups cooked and cooled brown rice
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp garlic, minced
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
2-3 tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
1 cup parsley, finely chopped
½ cup scallions (including greens), chopped
8 oz feta, crumbled

Combine rice, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix thoroughly, cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours, if possible. Just before serving, mix in tomatoes, parsley, cucumbers, scallion and feta.

Char-Baked Tomato, Zucchini and Eggplant

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, peeled and sliced
5 small tomatoes, thinly sliced
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small eggplant, about 6 inches long, thinly sliced crosswise
2 zucchini, about 5 inches long, thinly sliced lengthwise – or use your patty pans.
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pour some of the olive oil to cover the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch rectangular or 12-inch oval baking dish. Layer in half of the onion slices and one third of the tomatoes. Generously sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add a layer of eggplant and sprinkle on more salt. Add another third of the tomatoes, the zucchini, garlic, thyme, and the remaining onions. Top with the remaining tomatoes. Press down on the mixture with your hands. Pour over the remaining olive oil. Season generously with salt and pepper. (Don’t worry. The vegetables will be piled high but collapse as they cook.)

Bake uncovered for 1-1/2 hours. After 45 minutes, press the mixture down firmly with a spatula. The vegetables should be reduced in height, and should be brownish black and caramelized, almost charred in places. Return to the oven to finish roasting. Let cool for at least 10 minutes, so the mixture can solidify a bit. Cut into squares and serve.

Chickpeas with Potatoes & Tomatoes

serves 4 – (Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison; 1997)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 red potatoes, peeled and diced into cubes about the size of chickpeas
2 carrots, cut into ½ inch rounds
1 small dried chili (any left from the beginning of the season?)
2 plump garlic cloves mashed with ½ tsp. ground coriander
1 cup peeled, diced tomatoes
3 cups chickpeas, cooked, or 2 – 15 oz. cans, rinsed
salt and freshly ground pepper
½ cup water or chickpea broth
¼ cup chopped cilantro
½ cup chopped parsley
Heat oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until its lightly colored, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Add the potatoes, carrots, chili, and garlic and cook for 5 minutes more. Add the tomatoes and chickpeas, season with 1 tsp. salt and a few twists of pepper then add the water. Cover and simmer gently until the potatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste for salt and stir in the chopped, fresh herbs.

Collard Greens with Tomatoes & Garlic – serves 3 (

  • 1/8 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, cut into 1/2 -inch dice
  • ½ jalapeño, halved lengthwise
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 lb. collard greens, stems discarded & leaves finely shredded
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • Salt & freshly ground black pepper

In a large, enameled cast-iron casserole, heat the olive oil.  Add the garlic, onion, & jalapeño and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the tomatoes, collards, bay leaf & thyme sprig.  Cover & cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the collards are tender, about 20 minutes.  Discard the jalapeño, bay leaf & thyme sprig.  Season the collards with salt & pepper and serve.

Creamy, Garlicky Tomato Gazpacho With Crunchy Pecorino

The following recipe comes from member, Jane Laco with this note:
“My sister sent me this recipe, and it’s wonderful.  It’s super quick, made in the blender.  I haven’t made the Pecorino crunches, but the soup alone is delicious.  It’s also easy to make substitutions.  I used 1/2 of one of our humongous farm garlic cloves.  I used a whole jalapeno, seeds and all, instead of cayenne.  I used 2 tomatoes and added a couple of sun dried tomatoes to boost the tomato flavor a little.  I also added about 2 Tbsp ground flax seed as a healthy thing, and it’s a good thickener.  I used a little bit of farm onion instead of scallions, because it’s what I had.  Next time I might add a small pinch of sugar, which I think cuts the acidity of the tomatoes a little.  My sister has made it with goat milk yogurt, and she said that was really good.  So, if you’re fresh out of that, I think a dollop of goat cheese would be a good garnish.  She also omits the ice cubes.”

6 tablespoons grated pecorino Romano
2 large tomatoes (about 1 pound), cored and roughly chopped
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) plain sheep’s-milk, goat’s milk or regular yogurt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, more for serving
12 basil leaves, roughly chopped, more for serving
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
2 scallions (white and light green parts), roughly chopped
2 ice cubes
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt, more to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar, more to taste
Pinch cayenne pepper
Ground black pepper to taste.

1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Spread 2 tablespoons cheese into a thin layer in skillet; let melt and brown on bottom, about 30 seconds to one minute. Use a spatula to flip cheese; let cook until evenly browned on both sides, about a minute more. Transfer fried cheese to a paper-towel-lined plate. Repeat with remaining cheese, working 2 tablespoons at a time. Break fried cheese into large pieces.

2. To make soup, place tomatoes, yogurt, olive oil, basil, garlic, scallions, ice cubes, salt, vinegar, cayenne and black pepper in a blender. Purée until smooth. Taste and add more salt and vinegar, if necessary. Pour into small bowls and garnish with pieces of fried cheese and chopped basil. Drizzle soup liberally with olive oil.
Yield: 4 servings.

Easy Roasted Tomato Sauce

Member Christine Douglas shared this one last year from
3-4 pounds ripe tomatoes, ideally plum, stems removed
1 medium onion, halved and sliced
2-3 cloves of garlic, smashed and peeled
A large pinch of dried herb, crumbled (marjoram, thyme, basil or oregano) or 1 teaspoon chopped fresh (optional)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon each kosher salt and sugar
Freshly ground black pepper
1.Heat the oven to 375.
2.Slice the tomatoes in half lengthwise, then arrange them cut-side down, in one layer on a large, rimmed baking sheet (mine is 12- by 17-inches), lined with parchment paper, if you like, for easier clean-up. Arrange the onions, garlic and herbs over the top, then drizzle the whole thing evenly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, sugar, and pepper.
3.Bake for an hour and a half to two hours (or so), until the tomatoes are browning in spots and have fully collapsed. Around an hour in, the tomatoes will be sitting in a flood of juice in their pans, and then this juice will reduce as they cook further, which is what you want for a the thickest and most flavorful sauce.
4.Now you have two choices: put the contents of the pan (including all the juices), through a food mill: this will make a smooth, skinless and seedless sauce. Or else blend it all in a blender or food processor, which will make a good but more roughly textured and seedy sauce.
5. Use it or allow to cool completely and spoon into freezer bags and freeze.

Eggplant, tomato and Zucchini Gratin

1 eggplant
Sea salt
3 T olive oil
1 large onion, sliced crosswise
3 garlic cloves smashed
5 tomatoes (1 lb) quartered
3 T chopped parsley
2 t thyme
Freshly ground pepper
2 zucchini, sliced on the diagonal
2 t tomato paste
Finishing touches:
1 clove garlic
sea salt
2 T chopped basil
2 t thyme
2 T olive oil
4 ounces fresh mozzarella
1 cup fresh bread crumbs

Quarter the eggplant lengthwise, then cut each quarter crosswise into slices about 1/3 inch thick. Unless the eggplant is very fresh, salt the slices lightly and set aside while you prepare the other veggies, then blot dry.

Heat the oven to 375. Lightly oil an 8×10 inch or 10 inch oval gratin dish.

Heat the oil in a wide skillet with a lid over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, eggplant, tomatoes, parsley, and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Cover the pan, turn the heat to high, and when the vegetables begin to sizzle, turn the heat to low. Lay the zucchini over the top of the vegetables, cover, and cook for 20 minutes. By this time, the vegetables should be soft. Using a slotted spoon, turn them into the prepared gratin dish. Stir the tomato paste into the liquid remaining in the skillet, then pour the liquid over the vegetables.

To finish the gratin, pound the garlic with a few pinches of salt in a mortar until smooth. Add the basil, thyme, and oil and work together, forming a paste. Spoon the paste over the vegetables and then intersperse the cheese among them. Cover the surface with the bread crumbs.

Bake until the bread crumbs have browned and the vegetables are hot and bubbling, about 35 minutes. Let the gratin settle for 10 or 15 minutes before serving.

Farmer’s Market Greek Salad

serves 4 – (Fresh from The Farmers Market; 1997)
• 1 lb. mixed tomatoes, in different colors and sizes
• ½ red onion, sliced paper thin
• 1 small cucumber, about 1/3 lb., thinly sliced
• 2 oz. feta cheese
• 10-12 fresh basil leaves
• salt & freshly ground black pepper
• 16 Kalamata olives
• 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
• 1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar
• 1 clove garlic, minced to a paste with salt

• Cut large tomatoes into slices or chunks. Halve cherry tomatoes.
• Arrange tomatoes on a platter, top with onion then cucumbers. Dot the surface with feta. Tear basil leaves into small pieces and scatter over the top. Season with salt and pepper. Arrange the olives around the edge of the platter.
• Whisk together the olive oil, vinegar and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over salad just before serving.

Farro Salad with Tomatoes, Smoked Mozzarella, and Mint

serves 4 (Dinner by Melissa Clark; 2017) This salad is a favorite in our house. The original recipe calls for cherry tomatoes but seeded, chopped heirlooms are a delicious addition and make a colorful presentation. As with most salads, this recipe is versatile; I always add seeded, sliced cucumbers and I’ve replaced the mozzarella and mint with feta and basil.
1 tsp. fine sea salt, plus more as needed
2 cups farro
4 tsp. sherry vinegar or cider vinegar, plus more to taste
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (use equal amount seeded, chopped tomatoes from this week’s bag)
6 oz. smoked mozzarella, cubed
1⁄2 cup torn fresh mint leaves
1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Lemon wedges for serving (optional)
1. Bring a medium pot of heavily salted water to a boil and add the minutes, though some varieties can take up to an hour (replenish the water if the level runs low).
2. Drain the farro, and while it is still warm, stir in the vinegar and 1⁄2 tsp. fine sea salt. Let the farro cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. (Or cook the farro up to 8 hours ahead and keep it at room temp.)
3. Sprinkle the tomatoes with remaining 1⁄2 tsp. fine sea salt, and stir them into the farro along with the mozzarella, mint and olive oil. Season heavily with black pepper. Taste, and add more salt and / or vinegar if needed, and add a squeeze of lemon for brightness if you like.

Feta-Stuffed Tomatoes

Cut 4 tomatoes in half. Scoop out pulp and chop
Stir together pulp, 4 oz crumbled feta cheese, 1⁄4 cup bread crumbs, 2 tbsp chopped green onion, 2 tbsp. fresh parsley and 2 teaspoons olive oil. Spoon into tomatoes and place in 13×9 pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Serves 8.

Fresh Salsa

Mid-September shares often come with all the making for fresh salsa. When we have cilantro we definitely chop and add some, when we don’t, we leave it out and it’s still delicious.
2 tomatoes, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped
½-1 onion, finely chopped
½-1 jalapeno, minced (more to taste)
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt to taste
1 Tablespoon lime juice or cider vinegar
Pinch of sugar
1 Tablespoon cilantro chopped
Toss together – adjust any of the ingredients to taste.

Fresh Tomato Sauce

serves 4-6 (Spring Hill Community Farm Cookbook; 2011)   Recipe Note: “John Gifford shared this recipe many years ago.  It’s a summer treat we’ve been making ever since.”

2 ½ lbs. tomatoes, seeded and chopped, peeled if your ambitious
6 Tbsp. olive oil
½ Tbsp. fresh oregano, chopped
2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ tsp. sugar

Put all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.  Allow to stand at room temperature for at least 2 hours (for flavors to blend).  Adjust seasonings and toss with hot pasta.

Fresh Tomato Sauce with Pasta

We recently had dinner at a friend’s home and this is what she served. It is simple and delicious!
4-5 large, vine-ripened tomatoes
1/3 cup of olive oil
One large chopped garlic glove
Handful of basil or parsley leaves roughly chopped
A good amount of flaked Parmesan cheese (About 2/3 cup)
Salt to taste
Favorite pasta prepared al dente, about 4 cups.
Pitted kalamata olives & thinly sliced red onion (optional)

Core and chop tomatoes in large chunks. Add garlic and basil and salt.
Cover with the olive oil and stir gently. Let marinate at least 30 minutes at room temperature.

Cook the pasta just before you are going to eat. When it is done, drain and toss immediately with the tomatoes. After serving, top each serving with generous Parmesan cheese and optional olives and onions. Great served with a fresh baguette and a good glass of red wine.


For gazpacho with a little crunch, serve with diced tomatoes, cucumbers and red peppers, or some crostini on the side.
3 pounds tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped
1 cucumber, peeled, seeds removed and coarsely chopped
2 bell peppers, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and refrigerate overnight. In a blender, puree the vegetables until smooth. Strain the soup into a deep bowl, season with salt and pepper, and serve.

Greek Salad

makes about 4 1⁄2 cups (adapted from
3⁄4 lbs. tomatoes, seeded, diced (about 2 cups)
2 cups diced seeded peeled cucumber (from about 1 large)
1 cup diced bell pepper (from about 1 large)
1⁄4 cup pitted Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, halved
1⁄4 cup diced red onion
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh Italian parsley
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 1⁄2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1⁄2 tsp. dried oregano
1⁄4 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
Directions: Toss first 9 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Gently mix in cheese. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)

Green Bean and Tomato Salad

Serves 6 (adapted from Chez Panisse Vegetables by Alice Waters: 1996)
1 lbs. green beans
1 lbs. tomatoes
1 large shallot (or use part of a fresh onion)
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
3⁄4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Fresh basil or parsley, chopped
Directions: 1. Trim the beans and par-boil them in salted water until tender. Drain and immediately spread them out to cool. (The beans retain more flavor if you avoid shocking them in cold water) Stem the tomatoes and cut them into large chunks. This step can be done in advance. 2. For the vinaigrette, peel and dice the shallot fine (or onion) and put in a bowl with the vinegar and salt and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil. Taste and adjust the balance with more vinegar, oil, or salt, as needed. 3. Carefully toss the tomatoes in with the vinaigrette; this can sit for a while. Do not add the green beans until just before serving or they will discolor from the acid in the vinaigrette. Garnish with basil or parsley.

Green Tomato Salsa

Try making a salsa using a mix of green and red tomatoes.
Chop some tomatoes and onions and peppers (sweet and hot) until you have the combination you like.
Add a clove of crushed or minced garlic.
Add a little salt, some lime juice, maybe some olive oil. Adjust as needed.
Finish it up with some chopped cilantro!

Grilled Tomato Sauce

about 2 cups (Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison; 1997)
2 lbs. ripe tomatoes
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1⁄2 small onion, finely diced
Salt and freshly milled pepper
Pinch sugar if needed
Rub the tomatoes lightly with oil, then grill, broil, or sear them in a heavy skillet, turning them frequently, until blistered and charred. Puree them, skin and all. Don’t worry about the black flecks. Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a skillet over medium heat, add the onion, and sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the pureed tomatoes, and cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce has thickened. Season with salt, a little pepper, and sugar to correct the acidity if needed.

Grilled Tomato Sauce with Garlic

about 3 cups (Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison; 1997)
2 1⁄2 lbs. ripe tomatoes
About 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. dried oregano, preferably Mexican
15 garlic cloves, unpeeled (adjust amount depending on size of cloves and amount of tomatoes)
1. Toss the tomatoes with a little oil to coat them, the grill, broil or sear in a heavy skillet until wrinkled and charred in places. Toast the oregano in a dry skillet until fragrant, then remove to a dish. Toss the garlic cloves with enough oil to coat lightly, then put them in the same skillet. Cover and cook over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until browned on the outside and tender when pressed. Peel the garlic when cool enough to handle.
2. Puree the tomatoes and garlic in a blender until smooth. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a wide, deep skillet over medium- high heat. Pour in the tomato sauce and add the oregano. Simmer the sauce, stirring frequently, until its thickened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt to taste.

Insalata Caprese

Colleen Bartels had this salad at a restaurant and passed the recipe along:

2 pounds vine-ripened tomatoes (about 4 large), sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced1/4 inch thick
1/4 cup packed fresh basil or arugula leaves, washed well and spun
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled, if using arugula instead of basil
3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
fine sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
On a large platter arrange tomato and mozzarella slices and basil leaves, alternating and overlapping them. Sprinkle salad with oregano and arugula and drizzle with oil. Season salad with salt and pepper.

Lengsfeld’s Best Roma Tomato Sauce

6 cups (St. Paul Farmer’s Market Cookbook; 1999)

4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
3 whole cloves garlic
½ cup carrots, grated and finely chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
3 bay leaves
1 tsp. dried oregano or 1 Tbsp. fresh, chopped
2 tsp. dried thyme or 2 Tbsp. fresh, chopped
4 tsp. dried basil or 4 Tbsp. fresh, chopped
4 cups ripe roma tomatoes, peeled and crushed
1 (12 oz.) can tomato paste
4 tsp. salt ½ tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. honey

In a large saucepan, heat oil. Sauté onion and garlic cloves until soft. Crush garlic cloves with a fork. Add carrot, green pepper, parsley, bay leaves, and herbs. Stir well, then add tomatoes, tomato paste, and seasonings. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook, covered, over medium heat, at least 30 minutes, longer if a thicker sauce is desired. Remove bay leaves and add honey. Cooks’ Notes: Good and thick for pasta, pizza and lasagna.

Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce

about 2 cups (Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison; 1997) Adjust the recipe based on the amount of tomatoes you have. The recipe notes that oven temperature isn’t crucial so reduce heat depending on size of tomatoes.
2 1⁄2 lbs. roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise (try it with regular tomatoes and roast a little longer!)
1 onion, thinly sliced
4 thyme or marjoram sprigs
2 to 3 Tbsp. olive oil
Salt and freshly milled pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Put the tomatoes in a single layer in a baking pan with the onion and thyme, drizzle the oil over all, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until they are soft, shriveled, and falling apart, about 45 minutes to one hour. Remove the thyme branches and puree or pass through a food mill. Taste for salt and season with pepper.

Quinoa and Grilled Sourdough Salad

from “Plenty” by Yotam Ottolenghi 1/4 cup quinoa

  • 4 slices of sourdough bread
  • 1/3 cup olive oil + extra for bread
  • Salt
  • 4 ripe medium tomatoes
  • 3 small cucumbers, unpeeled
  • 1/2 small red onion
  • 4 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 1/2 tbsp chopped mint
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the quinoa in a pot of boiling water and cook until tender, between 9 and 11 minutes. Drain in a fine sieve, rinse under cold water and leave to dry.

Brush the bread with oil and sprinkle with salt. Place on a baking sheet and cook for 10 minutes on each side, or until completely dry and crisp. Let cool and break into bitesize pieces.

Dice the tomatoes and cucumber. Finely slice the onion. Place in a mixing bowl and combine with all other ingredients, including quinoa and bread. Taste and adjust seasoning.


1/4 cup olive oil, plus more as needed
1 1/2 cups small diced yellow onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 cups medium diced eggplant, skin on
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 cup diced green bell peppers
1 cup diced red bell peppers
1 cup diced zucchini squash
1 cup diced yellow squash
1 1/2 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Set a large 12-inch saute pan over medium heat and add the olive oil. Once hot, add the onions and garlic to the pan. Cook the onions, stirring occasionally, until they are wilted and lightly caramelized, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the eggplant and thyme to the pan and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is partially cooked, about 5 minutes. Add the green and red peppers, zucchini, and squash and continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, and salt and pepper, to taste, and cook for a final 5 minutes. Stir well to blend and serve either hot or at room temperature.

Red Rice
from the Washington Post food writer, Emily Horton

1-1/3 cups uncooked long-grain white rice
3 Tablespoons peanut oil
1 small yellow onion, cut into small dice (2/3 cup)
1 poblano pepper or ½ green bell pepper, seeded and cut into small dice (2/3 cup)
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3-1/2 cups fresh tomato puree (from 2-1/2 to 3 pounds very ripe tomatoes)

Use a bowl and a fine-mesh strainer to rinse the rice with several changes of water, rubbing the grains together with your fingers until the rice no longer clouds the water in the bowl.  Drain the rice a final time, then spread it on a baking sheet to air-dry.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat.  Once the oil shimmers, stir in the onion and the poblano pepper.  Cook for 4-5 minutes, until the onion becomes translucent.

Stir in the rice to coat; cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently and reducing the heat to prevent browning the rice.  It should smell nutty and begin to turn opaque.

Add the salt, black pepper and tomato puree; increase the heat as needed to bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover tightly and cook for 20 minutes, undisturbed.

Turn off the heat; keep the pot covered and let the rice sit for 20 minutes.

Use a wide spatula to gently turn the rice from the bottom of the pot, and fluff the grains with a fork.

To make the tomato puree, core the tomatoes and cut them in half.  Grate their cut sides on the large-holed sides of a box grater and set inside a large bowl.  Discard the skins; you will use the pulp and seeds and juice.  The yield is 3-1/2 cups.  Alternatively, peel and core the tomatoes, then run them through a blender on the lowest speed.

Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad

serves 6 – (Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics; 2008)
12 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise, seeds (not cores) removed
¼ cup good olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 ½ Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
16 oz. fresh salted mozzarella
12 fresh basil leaves, julienned
1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
2. Arrange tomatoes on a sheet pan, cut side up, in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with garlic, sugar, 1 ½ tsp. salt, and ½ tsp. pepper. Roast for 2 hours until the tomatoes are concentrated and begin to caramelize. Allow the tomatoes to cool to room temperature.
3. Cut the mozzarella into slices slightly less tan ½ inch thick. If the slices of mozzarella are larger than the tomatoes, cut the mozzarella slices in half. Layer the tomatoes alternately with the mozzarella on a platter and scatter the basil on top. Sprinkle slightly with salt & pepper and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Serve at room temperature

Roasted Tomato Sauce

Nonstick vegetable oil spray
2 pounds plum tomatoes, cored, halved lengthwise
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup tomato paste

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray. Arrange tomatoes, cut side up, on sheet. Toss with 2 tablespoons oil. Turn cut side up again if needed. Sprinkle with coarse salt, then oregano. Roast until soft but beginning to brown, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cool on sheet.

Puree tomatoes in blender until smooth. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; sauté 30 seconds. Add tomato puree and tomato paste and bring to boil, whisking to blend. Boil until sauce is reduced to 2 1/2 cups, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Cool sauce. Cover and chill up to 3 days.

Roma Tomato Confit

makes 2 cups (Heartland by Lenny Russo; 2015)
Author’s Note: “This robust confit (a garnish made usually from fruit or vegetables that are cooked until tender in a seasoned liquid; Merriam – Webster) is great with fish or as a robust topping for pizza. It also makes a tasty condiment for sandwiches in lieu of fresh tomatoes. Be sure to reserve the savory oil after removing the tomatoes. Toss with pasta or drizzle over toasted crusty bread.”

2 lbs. roma or other plum tomatoes, cored and halved lengthwise
6 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp. sea salt
½ Tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 cups grapeseed oil, sunflower oil, or extra virgin olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the tomatoes and garlic in a baking dish. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the oil over the top.
2. Cover tightly with foil and roast for 30 minutes. Remove tomatoes from the oven, and carefully remove the foil, making sure to release the steam away from your face. Cool to room temperature and transfer to a jar or container with a tight lid. Pour in the oil, making sure the tomatoes are completely covered with it. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 3 months.

Salsa Salad

Serves 6 (
1 – 1/2 lbs. tomatoes (about 4-5 medium)
1/2 small red onion
2 small cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1-2 jalapeno or serrano peppers, seeded if desired and finely chopped
2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil or chili oil
2-4 Tbsp. chopped cilantro leaves, to taste
Flakey salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Slice the tomatoes into bite-size pieces and set in a colander over a bowl to drain. Peel and slice the onion into slivers. Submerge the slivers in a bowl of ice water and set aside, stirring once or twice, for ten minutes. Meanwhile, in a mortar and pestle, bash together the garlic and salt until they form a paste. Add half the minced jalapeño and smash into the garlic paste. Stir in the lime juice and oil. Drain the onions. In a mixing bowl, toss the onions with the tomatoes, remaining chili peppers, and cilantro. Pour over the dressing and toss well. Place on a serving platter or individual serving plates and top with black pepper.

Simply Tomato Sauce

makes 4 cups (Minnesota’s Bounty by Beth Dooley; 2013) Author’s Note: “This is a good go-to sauce. It is great tossed with pasta, spread on pizza, spooned over sautéed chicken. Make an extra batch to can or freeze for later. You’ll enjoy it when the winter wind howls outside your door.” 

  • 1 Tbsp. Olive oil or vegetable oil 
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 6 cups chopped Roma tomatoes 
  • ½ cup chopped basil (or try the parsley?) 
  • 1 Tbsp. Oregano 
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper 

Put the oil in a large pot, and set it over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the garlic and sauté, stirring constantly, for about 15-30 seconds, watching that the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the tomatoes and herbs and bring the sauce to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the sauce for about 20 to 30 minutes. For a smooth sauce, run it through a food mill or strainer. For a rustic sauce, leave it as is. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

Spicy but Simple Tomato Sauce

We make this one fairly frequently. It’s quick, easy and flavorful. You may want to hold back on the red pepper flakes depending on how spicy you like things.

8 or so roma tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
4 large cloves garlic, minced (I think I used 2 huge ones)
1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes or to taste
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1 pound penne or other short tubular pasta

Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a boil in a large pot for cooking the pasta.
Roughly chop the tomatoes
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and hot red pepper flakes and sauté over medium heat until the garlic is golden, about 2 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and salt to the pan. Simmer, occasionally using a spoon to break apart the tomatoes, until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes. Stir in the parsley. Taste for salt and hot pepper and adjust seasonings if needed.
While preparing the sauce, cook and drain the pasta. Toss the hot pasta with the tomato sauce. Mix well and transfer portions to warm pasta bowls.
Serve immediately. 6 servings

Stewed Peppers with Tomatoes, Onions & Garlic – serves 6 ( Consider serving this side dish as a topping for pizza, pasta, polenta, rice, or bruschetta, or serve as a filling for omelets or stirred into scrambled eggs.

  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 plump garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 large peppers, thinly sliced or chopped
  • 1 (14 oz.) can chopped tomatoes, drained of some but not all juices OR chopped fresh tomatoes!
  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves or ½ tsp. dried thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. Heat the oil in a large, non-stick skillet and add onion.  Cook, stirring, until tender, about 5 minutes, then add the garlic & peppers.  Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes and add ½ tsp. salt.  Continue to cook for another 5 minutes.
  2. Add the tomatoes, thyme, salt, and pepper, and bring to a simmer, and simmer, stirring from time to time, until the tomatoes have cooked down somewhat, about 10 minutes.  Cover and reduce heat and simmer over low heat for another 15-20 minutes (or longer) stirring from time to time, until the mixture is thick and fragrant.  Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Stewed Romano Beans with Tomatoes – serves 4 to 6 (

  • 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, finely chopped
  • Salt
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ½ lbs. fresh romano beans, trimmed & cut in 2 to 3-inch lengths
  • 1 cup grated or chopped peeled tomatoes (about ¾ lb.)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh dill (or parsley?)
  • Ground black pepper
  • Feta cheese for topping, optional
  • Cooked pasta or grains, such as quinoa or brown rice, optional
  1. Heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil over medium heat in a wide, lidded skillet or Dutch oven and add onion and a pinch of salt.  Cook gently, without browning, stirring often, until tender & translucent, about 8 minutes.  Add garlic, cook, stirring, for another minute, until fragrant.
  2. Stir in romano beans, tomatoes and half the dill.  Add ½ cup water, bring to a simmer,
  3. Season with salt & pepper, and simmer for 20 minutes, until beans are tender.  Stir in remaining dill & olive oil and simmer for another 2-3 minutes.  Taste and adjust seasonings.
  4. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature, with feta sprinkled over top if desired; serve over cooked grains or tossed with pasta if desired.

Summer Sauce

John Gifford shared recipe many years ago.
2-1/2 lbs tomatoes, seeded and chopped – skinned if you’re ambitious
6 Tablespoons olive oil
½ Tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ teaspoons sugar
Put all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Allow to stand at room temperature for at least two hours, then season and toss with hot pasta

The Best Summer Tomato Salad (It’s Better then Caprese!)

serves 4 (

  • 1 small or ½ medium red onion, thinly sliced into half-moons
  • 1 ½ lbs. tomatoes (about 3 medium)
  • ¼ cup packed fresh herbs, such as basil, cilantro, dill, parsley, or a combination, coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp. Kosher salt
  •  ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1. Place the onion in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Let stand while you prepare the rest of the ingredients, about 10 minutes.

2. Core tomatoes and slice into ½ inch thick half moons. Place in a large bowl. Add the herbs, oil, vinegar, slat & peeper. Drain the onions and add to the bowl. Toss to combine and let stand for at least 10 or up to 30 minutes before serving. Taste and season with more salt, pepper, vinegar, or oil as needed.

Tomato Jam

Sweet but not too sweet, this jam has a texture so luxurious and refined that it’s hard to believe it’s so easy to make. It’s great on burgers in place of ketchup or served alongside grilled lamb or salmon. It also pairs exceptionally well with cheeses and cured meats. Makes 1-1/2 cups.
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup good quality white wine vinegar
4-1/2 lb. ripe tomatoes, seeded and coarsely chopped (about 10 cups)
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
Kosher salt

In a 5- to 6-quart pot, combine the sugar, vinegar, and 1/4 cup water. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture looks syrupy, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, red pepper flakes (if using), and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes have broken down and the juice has thickened, 1-1/2 to 2 hours. (You may need to stir more frequently as the jam thickens.) Season to taste with salt. Let cool to room temperature, transfer to a jar, and refrigerate for up to 2 months.

Tomato Leek Tart

1 package (15 ounces) refrigerated pie pastry
4 ounces provolone cheese, shredded
1 pound leeks (white portion only), sliced
6 medium plum tomatoes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Place both pastry sheets on greased baking sheets. Sprinkle each with provolone cheese, leaving 1 in. around edges. Arrange leeks and tomato slices over provolone cheese. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and pepper. Top with mozzarella cheese. Fold edges over filling.

Bake at 425° for 18-22 minutes or until crusts are lightlybrowned. Cut into wedges. Serve warm. Yield: 2 tarts

Tomato Fennel Salad

1 1/2 pounds heirloom tomatoes
1 small fennel bulb
2 tablespoons good olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Core the tomatoes and cut into wedges. Remove the top of the fennel (save some fronds for garnish) and slice the bulb very thinly crosswise with a knife or on a mandoline.

Toss the tomatoes and fennel in a bowl with the olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Garnish with 2 tablespoons chopped fennel fronds, season to taste, and serve.

Tomato Garlic Soup with Parmesan Croutons
Spring Hill Member, Mary Lindner, passes along this recipe she cut from the newspaper several years ago.

4 large tomatoes, cored (about 2-1/2 lb)
2 cans fat-free, less-sodium, chicken broth
2 quarts water
2 quarts ice water
1-1/4 cups uncooked seashell pasta
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
4 teaspoons olive oil, divided
1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3⁄4 cups finely chopped red onion
8 (1/2 oz) sliced diagonally cut French bread baguette (about 1 inch thick)
8 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1⁄2 cup (2 oz) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1 cup water
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
Fresh thyme sprigs (optional)

Score bottom of each tomato with an “X.” Bring 2 quarts water to a boil in a Dutch oven. Add tomatoes; cook 30 seconds. Remove tomatoes with a slotted spoon; plunge tomatoes into ice water. Drain and peel. Cut each tomato in half crosswise. Push seeds out of tomato halves using the tip of a knife; discard seeds. Chop tomatoes.
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Toss pasta with 1 teaspoon oil. Cool completely.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion; cook 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 3 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring frequently. Stir in tomatoes, 1 cup water, parsley, chives, oregano, thyme and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add pasta, vinegar and pepper; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated.
Preheat broiler. Place bread slices on a baking sheet, and top each slice with 1 tablespoon cheese. Broil 1-1/2 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve with soup. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.

Tomato Potato Gratin
serves 6 – 8 (Minnesota’s Bounty; 2013)
Author Beth Dooley notes, “Late summer meets early fall in this dish.  Make it when the baby potatoes are just coming in and the tomato crop has just passed its peak.  Vary the cheeses: feta and cheddar work nicely here.  While most often served as a side dish, this also works nicely for a main course.“

3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 pounds potatoes, thinly sliced
¼ cup chopped basil
1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
2 pounds tomatoes of mixed colors and sizes, thinly sliced
¼ cup white wine
¼ cup shredded Parmesan

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Use just a little of the oil to grease a 9-inch gratin dish.  Distribute the onion slices over the bottom of the dish, and season them with salt and pepper.  Arrange a layer of potato slices over the onions, followed by a little salt and pepper, a sprinkling of basil and parsley, and then a layer of tomatoes.  Continue alternating layers of potatoes, seasoning and herbs, and tomatoes.  Pour in the wine.
Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil, and bake until the potatoes have softened, about 45 to 50 minutes.  Uncover the dish, sprinkle the cheese over the top, return it to the oven, and continue baking until the cheese is nicely browned.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Tomato Salad
(Spring Hill Recipe Archives, year unknown, originally published in Victoria Magazine, 2002)
4 cups ½-inch cubed stale, crusty Italian or French bread, lightly toasted
1 lb. tomatoes, cored, seeded, and cut into ½-inch pieces
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½ – inch pieces
2/3 cup minced red onion
1 cup firmly packed basil leaves
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup red wine vinegar
½ to 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

In a bowl, combine the bread, tomatoes, cucumber and onion.  In a blender, combine the basil, garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper, and puree until well combined.  Add the dressing to the salad, toss to coat well and let sit for 1 – 2 hours to allow flavors to mellow.

Tomato, Zucchini and Corn Pie

3 cups fresh, corn kernels
5 small zucchini or summer squash cut into matchstick pieces
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh basil
2 tablespoons melted butter
3 to 4 tomatoes, cut into 1/2-inch slices
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat the oven to 375°. In a 13 by 9-inch ovenproof baking dish, combine the corn, zucchini, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, the dill, and the melted butter, tossing to coat the vegetables. Cover the vegetables with the tomatoes. Sprinkle with the remaining salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, combine the cheese and the bread crumbs. Sprinkle the mixture over the tomatoes and drizzle with the olive oil. Bake the pie for 30 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling. Remove it from the oven, and let it stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Tomatoes and Garbanzo Bean Salad

(undated Springhill Newsletter but I remember making this salad about 15 years ago) A note from Patty – I’m pretty sure this recipe came from my neighbor and Spring Hill member, Cindy Theorin.It’s a good one!
1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
2 large tomatoes, chopped
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley chopped
1 large clove garlic (or to taste), minced
3 scallions or onions, sliced or chopped small
1-2 Tbsp. wine vinegar
6 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
Pour mixture over above ingredients and marinate at room temp for 3-4 hours

Tomatoes Provençal

David Hemphill shared this recipe with fellow member Jess Fischer at the 07 Fall Harvest. He learned of the recipe from friends who lives in France.

Serves 4
12 roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise
Sea salt
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
5 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
12 cloves of garlic (or 6 cut in half lenthwise if they the gorgeous enormous cloves of Spring Hill)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 275 degrees.

Sprinkle the halves with salt, and set them on a baking sheet. Press a garlic clove into the center of each tomato. Mix together the bread crumbs & parsley. Cover tomatoes with the mixture, and drizzle with oil. Bake for 2-3 hours, or until roasted and still retaining a little moisture. Baste throughout the baking to avoid drying out too far. Serve on pasta or risotto.