50 Fabulous Fresh Tomato Recipes
Got too many tomatoes from your garden and don't know what to do with them all? Try some of the recipes and ideas I've listed below!
If you grow your own tomatoes, or live somewhere that they are in beautiful local abundance during the summertime, you may find yourself very quickly with more tomatoes than you have any idea what to do with them all! Sure, you can toss those tomatoes into a garden salad, slice them for sandwiches, or can them for the winter. But after a while you might start running out of fresh tomato recipe ideas.
Well, this past summer I found myself overloaded with beautiful Jersey-grown fresh tomatoes and wanted to see just how many different recipes I could make with them. Originally I thought I could get to 100 different recipes, but that proved a little too ambitious for me. But I did get to make 50 Great Recipes using Fresh Tomatoes and have shared them all with you here - along with my photographs of how each recipe came out. Some recipes came from my favorite cookbooks; others I found on-line; still others simply came together from my own imagination.
These tomato recipe and ideas are divided into different categories such as raw tomatoes, roasted tomatoes, simmered tomatoes, and of course tomato sauces. So if you need a little fresh tomato-inspiration, stick around and browse my ideas presented here!
All photos on this page are by the author, sockii, unless provided by Amazon.
Raw Tomato Recipes
Why mess with perfection?
When you've got beautiful, vine-ripened tomatoes, there's little that needs be done to enjoy them. Sliced and properly seasoned, you can really do no wrong with a delicious raw tomato. This is especially true with colorful heirloom tomatoes, which can be a delightful visual display of colors and flavors on the plate.
1. Tomato, Basil and Mozzerella Salad
Aka "Insalata Caprese" - The classic Italian tomato salad
Few salads just epitomize summer the way that this classic Italian combination does. Layers of ripe sliced tomatoes and mozzarella cheese, dressed with fresh basil, salt, pepper and only the finest quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar. It's perfection that needs nothing else - except perhaps some crusty Italian bread on the side!
2. Heirloom Tomato "Caesar" Salad
A different take on a Caesar Salad
If you've got colorful, fresh heirloom tomatoes, this is a great way to enjoy them - dressed in a Caesar-salad type dressing of olive oil, Worchestershire sauce, mashed anchovies and topped with a baked "crust" of parmesan cheese, flour and bacon. This was the cover recipe of the August-September issue of Food Network Magazine and you can find it here on-line. I made it at home and loved it.
3. Panzanella (Bread Salad)
An Italian Tradition in the Summertime
A salad of bread and vegetables? Absolutely! Panzanella is a classic Italian dish, perfect for using up yesterday's bread and tossing it in a vinaigrette with fresh summer vegetables - of course including tomatoes. Here I've made one with yellow tomatoes, red tomatoes, red bell pepper, Cuban peppers, red onion, capers and zucchini (the only vegetable which I've cooked for the salad). The bread for panzanella is usually soaked in milk or water first for this salad; I actually prefer Ina Garten's Panzanella where the bread is instead toasted in a pan with olive oil, which is what I've done here.
4. Tomato Salsa
A delicious side dish or party dip
You can't go wrong with a classic chopped-tomato salsa. It's great of course with tortilla chips, but also a wonderful side with grilled meats, seafood, on tacos, even on scrambled eggs! There are endless ways to prepare it, but the basic ingredients typically involve olive oil, lime juice (or red wine vinegar), fresh cilantro, jalapeno peppers, chopped onions and/or garlic. Seasoned with salt and pepper and allowed to marinate, it's a hard-to-beat combination and one you can easily experiment with by trying different kinds of peppers for a sweeter or hotter flavor.
A few basic recipes for tomato salsa:
* Fresh Tomato Salsa from Simply Recipes
* Garden Tomato Salsa from Allrecipes
* Chunky Tomato Salsa from Taste of Home
All about salsas: Make them with more than just tomatoes!
5. Italian Chop Salad
A burst of flavors and textures
"Chop Salad" is a great way to combine fresh tomatoes with other colorful vegetables for a terrific lunchtime salad - or perhaps as the side dish for a nicely grilled steak. Combine cabbage, lettuce, onion, celery, bell peppers and of course tomatoes in a freshly prepared red wine vinaigrette.
Add some chopped fresh herbs from the garden (basil, oregano, Italian flat-leaf parsley) and some grated parmesan cheese for an Italian twist on the classic chop salad. This salad is great even the next day, after marinating overnight in the dressing!
The main trick to this dish is to be sure all vegetables are chopped to a consistent size, and to try to combine a variety of colors and textures for an interesting finish.
6. Bruschetta with Fresh Tomatoes
A perfect party snack or appetizer!
Bruschetta is a classic Italian appetizer dating back to the 15th century! All you need to start with is slices of bread that are toasted in the oven or grilled after being rubbed with garlic and seasoned with salt, pepper and olive oil. One of the classic Bruschetta toppings of course consists of a salad of chopped tomatoes, onions, basil and seasonings. This is perfect to make in advance for parties - just prepare the toast at the last minute and top with pre-prepared tomato salad.
Bruschetta, Crostoni and Crostini
Everything you ever need to know about bruschetta
Love classic tomato bruschetta? Want to learn more about the many different ways one can prepare this classic Italian antipasti and snack? Then this is the perfect cookbook for you. It contains over 100 recipes from around Italy showing how bruschetta (and other Italian "toasts") can be used to showcase cheese, egg, meat, fish, shellfish, and of course, vegetables and tomatoes.
Full color photographs illustrate this lovely little volume. Learn about the "Four Essential Breads" (and how to make them yourself) along with wonderful recipes such as Crostini with Asparagus and Prosciutto, Bruschetta with Fontina Cheese and Spring Onion, Crostini of Chicken Livers with Vin Santo, and of course Bruschetta with Tomatoes in a variety of different classic styles.
7. Tomato, Cucumber and Dill Salad
A cool and refreshing summer side dish
Got some beautiful fresh cucumber from the garden to go along with those tomatoes? Then you can enjoy this refreshing salad that works great as a side dish for steaks or seafood from the grill. Simply dice together the tomatoes, cucumbers, a white onion and season with salt, pepper, olive oil and red wine vinegar. Mix in some fresh dill and flat-leaf parsley and allow it to chill and for the flavors to combine.
Even as someone who is not a huge fan of cucumbers, I really like the flavor of this salad as long as all of the ingredients are perfectly fresh.
8. Tuna and White Bean Salad with Tomatoes
A Northern Italian favorite
This is a great lunch salad which features a classic combination of Northern Italian ingredients: white beans, canned tuna fish, chopped fresh tomatoes, onions, olives and capers. The dressing is simply olive oil, salt and pepper with a splash of white wine vinegar. You can enjoy it on its own with bread or crackers, on top of salad greens, or as part of an elegant summertime lunch buffet.
Tomato Sauces and Pasta Dishes
Tomatoes and pasta - an unbeatable combination
Making Tomato Sauce at Home
It's so easy you'll never buy from a jar again
Of course one of the most popular uses for tomato is to make tomato sauce (I know some people call it gravy. Not in this house!) Every Italian mother no doubt has her own recipe for it, but far too often I believe people add too much to their sauce from the start and it only mars the flavor of beautifully ripe, delicious tomatoes. What follows are some classic yet different ways you can make tomato sauce for pasta, pizza, dipping mozzarella sticks...you know the possibilities are endless! Tomato sauces generally freeze well too, so it's a great way to cook up a lot of fresh tomatoes for later enjoyment.
One step that is crucial in almost any kind of tomato sauce preparation is to first peel the tomatoes - no one wants bits of skin in their sauce. To do this quickly and simply, blanch the tomatoes first by dropping them in boiling hot water for just a minute or so. Drain them, let them get cool to the touch, and it will be easy to peel away the skins while not losing any of the delicious flesh inside.
9. Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter
So simple. So delicious.
This might sound like a surprising combination, but until you've made it, don't knock it. Simply combine about 2 pounds of peeled and prepared fresh tomatoes with 5 tablespoons of butter and one onion cut in half. Cook over very low heat for about 45 minutes or until the butter fat separates out and the sauce becomes thick and flavorful. This sauce is so delicious you will want to just sit there and eat it right out of the pot - just toss out the onion before storage or use on a pasta dish. It is the perfect sauce for gnocchi. The recipe is from Marcella Hazan's "Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking" and you can learn more about it at Food52.
Remembering Marcella: One of my all-time favorite cookbook authors
10. Slow-Cooked Tomato Sauce with Red Wine
This is probably close to what your mamma - or her Italian mamma - makes at home. A slow-simmered (for 3 hours or longer) sauce of fresh tomatoes, tomato paste, red wine, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, herbs and perhaps a touch of sugar.
It can be a wonderfully complex sauce, or it can go wrong if the balance of ingredients isn't quite right - hence, often a lot of fussing with the sugar, salt and wine balance while on the stove. Yet if it comes out just right, it's excellent to then finish off by adding sausage, meatballs or other cuts of meat for a classic Italian Sunday Supper.
11. Raw Tomato Sauce
Fast, easy...and no cooking required!
When you've got the absolute very best fresh tomatoes, there's no need to even cook them to make a great tomato sauce. Just removed the seeds, chop them, and combine with olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh herbs of your choosing. Fresh basil is a classic, though you can also use baby arugula, a touch of balsamic vinegar, slivered red onions, a splash of lemon juice...the variations are endless as long as you keep it fresh, simple - and raw!
12. Pasta All'Amatriciana
A pork-and-tomato sauce from the Lazio region of Italy
This pasta dish hails from the town of Amatrice in Italy. The sauce traditionally is made with tomatoes, guanciale (dried meat from a hog's jowls) and pecorino cheese. It works well over hearty noodles such as bucatini. If you can't get guanciale, pancetta can be a fine substitute, and the sauce has a lovely sweet-and-spicy flavor from the sauteed onions and tomatoes, red chili pepper and pork.
Here are some recipes where you can try this simple-to-prepare dish for yourself:
* Bucatini All'Amatriciana by Bon Appetit
* Bucatini all'Amatriciana from about.com
Pasta: Every Way for Every Day
A wonderful "bible" for Classic Italian Pasta Dishes
My versions of the previous pasta recipes either come directly or inspired by the wonderful cookbook "Pasta: Every Way for Every Day". It is perhaps THE one pasta cookbook I would recommend to any home chef wanting to learn more about pasta cookery basics, as well as how to experiment with simple recipes to make them personal and unique.
Beautifully illustrated with recipes indicated as "Slow Cook", "Fast Cook" or even "No Cook"! Learn to make pasta with tomatoes, cheese, eggplant and peppers, lentils and beans, meat, seafood, and poultry...this is a fabulous book for starting home cooks.
13. Sicilian-Style Pasta with Eggplant and Tomatoes
Here is a great combination for late summer dining, when both ripe tomatoes and fresh eggplant are readily available. This simple but fresh sauce gets a kick from red pepper, capers and olives but has plenty of fresh vegetables and herbs as well to give it a lovely flavor. You can use either fresh plum tomatoes, or high-quality canned plum tomatoes. Of course, my preference is always fresh if you have them!
My recipe can be found at my website, South Jersey Foodie: Sicilian-Style Pasta with Eggplant.
Pasta Primavera is a terrific way to showcase fresh spring or summer vegetables, including of course fresh tomatoes. Whatever vegetables you have on hand can work wonderfully with this dish: summer squash, peas, peppers, asparagus - all lightly sauteed in olive oil with garlic and herbs, then finished off with grated parmesean cheese. In the dish above I've used fresh, sweet yellow pear tomatoes from my garden along with carrots, red onions and zucchini.
15. Pasta with Tomato, Sweet Peppers, Anchovies and Cardoons (or Celery)
A lovely traditional pasta with an unusual flavor
Cardoons are popular in Italy in the winter, but not so easy to find in the markets in the States - or when out of season. But that's okay, because this recipe also works very well with celery or artichokes if you can't get cardoons.
I like it because it's a nice and easy, "chunky" tomato sauce that just has a little edge to its flavor that catches people by surprise - in a good way! The addition of anchovies gives it a stronger flavor along with the rough-cut vegetables.
While the original recipe calls for canned tomatoes, I liked making it with my own home-grown San Marzano plum tomatoes. But it is essential to first blanch and peel them as you don't want tomato skins in this pure and simple recipe.
This recipe comes from "Lorenza's Pasta", a wonderful volume on classic Italian pasta dishes. Along with of course all of the basic recipes, it features many unique, regional dishes one doesn't see regularly in other pasta cookbooks. Besides the recipe featured here, it includes such interesting pasta dishes as "Linguine with Tuna Carpaccio", "Rigatoni with Peppery Mint Sauce", "Ravioli with Black and Red Caviar" and "Buccatini Tart with Pumpkin".
I recommend this book to anyone looking to explore Italian pasta dishes on an entirely higher and unique level...most recipes are not difficult and just require a little "thinking outside the (Italian-American) box"!
Roasted Tomato Recipes
Oven-roasting tomatoes is easy - and leads to many different wonderful uses!
Roasting is a wonderful starting point for many different tomato recipes and ideas. Roasting not only is a great way to reduce a large bulk of tomatoes, but it will intensify their flavor tremendously.
My favorite way to oven-roast tomatoes is very simple. I preheat my oven to 300°F. Meanwhile, slice the tomatoes in half and place them cut-side up in a shallow baking dish (use as many tomatoes as necessary to fill the dish in a single layer.) Top them with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, 2-3 cloves of crushed garlic, and a spring or two of fresh oregano. Bake for 90 minutes and take out when wilted down and softened.
These will stay good for several days in your fridge to be enjoyed in many different ways...like the recipes and ideas that follow!
16. Roasted Tomato Salad with Bruschetta Toast
Of course the simplest way to enjoy those delicious fresh-roasted tomatoes is just "as is". Serve them over fresh baby arugula or watercress as a warm salad or vegetable side dish, alongside some freshly toasted, seasoned Italian bread (garlic bread or merely brushed with olive oil, salt and pepper before toasting in the oven.) Few things could be quite so satisfying.
17. Roasted Corn and Tomato Salsa
This is a great summer salsa when you can get both the best fresh sweet corn - and tomatoes. Roast the corn in the oven with a little spicy seasoning (chili powder, salt, pepper), then mix together with your pre-roasted tomatoes, diced onion and jalapenos, and lime juice. Adjust salt, pepper and oil to taste before serving. Here I've also added some raw purple beans from my garden sliced thinly for crunch and color.
18. Pizza with Roasted Tomatoes and Mixed Vegetables
Want to make a pizza with some really complex and delicious flavors? Use some of those roasted tomatoes, along with a selection of chopped vegetables: peppers, onions, mushrooms, etc. Top just lightly with some grated Romano cheese.
Haven't made pizza before? Then learn more about how to make great pizzas at home at the link below:
19. Stuffed Peppers with Eggplant and Roasted Tomatoes
This makes a delicious and filling vegetarian dinner made with the best of the summer harvest. It takes a little time to put it all together but it's well worth it. You can find my recipe at my food blog, South Jersey Foodie.
20. Roasted Summer Vegetable Risotto
Roast fresh tomatoes along with other summer harvest vegetables for a fabulous risotto base. Risotto can seem intimidating to many chefs, but as long as you are willing to give it time and attention while cooking, risotto is not that difficult to prepare well.
This is another recipe you can find at my food blog (Summer Vegetable Risotto). Along with fresh tomatoes, you can include sweet red onions, zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, sweet peppers...the possibilities are only limited by your garden!
21. Baked Tuna Sicilian Style
A classic Sicilian-style dish. Tuna (or Swordfish) is lightly marinated in lemon and olive oil before being baked with a topping of chopped tomatoes, black olives, capers, and sauteed onions or garlic. Finished with some browned bread crumbs and basil, it's a dish that'll take you right to the shores of coastal Italy.
You can find the recipe photographed above in the great "Fish Food" cookbook shown to the right. It's a great collection of recipes for those looking for new ways to prepare seafood, or easy takes on classic recipes. Even if you're sometimes uncertain about cooking fish at home, this book will take away a lot of that uncertainty.
22. Halibut with Coconut Milk, Tomatoes and Peppers
This delicious fish recipe combines flavorful halibut steaks with coconut milk, fresh tomatoes, sweet peppers and hot chili peppers for just a touch of heat. Served over rice, it's filling and a wonderful change of pace. You can find my complete recipe at South Jersey Foodie.
23. Filet of Fish in Tomato & Olive Sauce
White fish filets such as flounder, sole and orange roughy go terrific with a simple, simmered tomato sauce. Combine fresh tomatoes with concentrated tomato paste, garlic, fresh herbs and olive oil, simmered over modest heat for a half hour. Meanwhile pan-fry the fish in butter till crispy brown, transfer to a baking dish, then top with the sauce and olives. Baked for 20 minutes at 350 degrees, it makes for a wonderful dinner for anyone who loves classic Italian flavors.
This dish is adapted from a recipe from "Perfect Italian", one of my favorite Italian cookbooks. This small volume contains a wide variety of classic Italian dishes beautifully illustrated and with easy-to-follow recipes. You can learn to prepare everything from Tuscan Chicken to Sausage & Rosemary Risotto to Zabaglione in this book - and of course, the Filet of Fish in Tomato and Olive Sauce shown here.
24. Swordfish Involtini
A seafood specialty from Sicily
Swordfish is prominently featured in much Sicilian cooking, including this elegant stuffed and rolled preparation. Swordfish steaks are thinly sliced, then coated with a mixture of parsley, breadcrumbs, cheese and seasoning before being rolled. The rolled swordfish is then cooked on the stove top in a simmering tomato sauce with onions, olives and capers. The flavors are rich yet still allow the fish to shine as the centerpiece of the meal.
This expansive volume is an Italian food lover's delight - and where I got my recipe for Swordfish Involtini. It spotlights regional cuisine from all around Italy: Lombardy, Tuscany, Sicily, Puglia, and so many more. Best of all, this book goes beyond the typical to more unusual Italian dishes you might not be familiar with yet are still easy to prepare at home. Recommended!
25. Halibut with Tomatoes and Pine Nuts
A healthy and light halibut dish
This Italian recipe has wonderful flavors of Sicily, combining toasted pine nuts, lemon, fennel and white wine along with gently simmered tomatoes, olive oil and garlic. It looks elegant yet is a snap to prepare.
This recipe comes from Chuck Williams' delightful "Simple Italian Cooking", which certainly lives up to its name. Yet as simple as the recipes are, they are bursting with authentic Italian flavors and tasty surprises. Try such authentic Italian dishes as Braised Fennel in Milk, Grape Focaccia, Baked Semolina Gnocchi and Lamb Stew with Polenta.
26. Broiled Swordfish with Warm Corn and Tomato Salsa
Brighten up swordfish with this summery salsa
This is an easy and colorful dish that really takes advantage of summer vegetables. The salsa is easily prepared while the swordfish briefly marinates in lime juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and a Caribbean spice blend. Saute red onions or shallots, then add raw corn kernels along with sweet and hot pepper to your taste. Once the corn is cooked through, toss together with chopped fresh tomatoes, fresh herbs (I've used torn basil here), more lime juice and seasonings.
The salsa makes a crunchy, moist topping for the swordfish which can be either broiled or grilled. I like this dish served with a bright vegetable side, such as simple boiled or sauteed green beans.
27. Mexican Baked Fish
A light and easy weeknight dinner
This fish recipe is so simple to make, and so refreshingly tasty! Any flaky, white fish will do - I've used tilapia here. It's baked in a foil packet, topped with fresh chopped tomatoes, cilantro, lime and orange juice, bell and hot peppers, and seasoning. No oil, no frying, nothing but delicious fruit and vegetable toppings which burst with flavor when you open the packet after baking. Guests will have fun opening their packets at the table!
This is another recipe from the Fish Food cookbook linked above.
28. Fresh Tuna with Sting Beans and Tomatoes
An Italian-style dish you can cook in your wok!
East meets West in this wonderful and simple stir-fry recipe.
A wok is a perfect way to cook fresh tuna so that it is flash-fried and not dried out. Classic Italian ingredients such as tomatoes, olives, garlic, basil and anchovies are cooked together with fresh string beans for a healthy and satisfying meal. I prepared it here with wax beans fresh from the farmers market, but of course you can use whichever type of beans you have on hand that are fresh and tender.
Quality of ingredients is essential for this dish, for the quick cooking method allows all flavors and textures to stand out on their own merits. It's a wonderful summer dish provided you can get high-quality tuna steaks.
This recipe came from "Stir Fry: Tasty Recipes for Every Day", one of my absolute kitchen essentials. This cookbook proves that stir-fry cookery isn't just for Chinese recipes, it can be utilized for almost any cuisine. Every recipe includes photographs and easy-to-follow instructions, and I've never tried a recipe from this book I didn't enjoy. Other recipes utilizing tomato in this book include "Chili Crab", "Mixed Beans with Balsamic and Lime", "Warm Stir-Fried Salad", "Vegetables Provencale", "Salt and Pepper Squid" and "Spicy Sausage Stir-Fry".
Tomatoes with Meat and Poultry
29. Steak Pizzaiola
An Italian classic meat dish!
Steak Pizzailoa means "steak prepared pizza-style". Traditionally that means a cut of beef cooked slowly until tender in a sauce of olive oil, tomatoes and peppers. Other elements often included are olives, capers, garlic and basil. This dish is a great way to add flavor to a less expensive steak - or, you can dress up the dish by using a nice prime steak quickly seared, then sliced and tossed with a fresh-made tomato sauce and pasta as I've prepared here. One modest-sized steak can now easily make a filling dinner for two.
30. Balsamic-Glazed Rib Eye with Spicy Tomatoes and Arugula
This is one of my favorite ways to enjoy my favorite steak: the Rib-Eye. The steak is pan seared with a touch of rosemary before a final glaze of balsamic vinegar. Chopped tomatoes are lightly sauteed separately with garlic, red chili flakes and a spash of vodka. The steak is served on a bed of baby arugula, the tomatoes, and then topped with freshly grated parmesan. The result is a hearty dish that burst with rustic Italian flavor.
31. Chili with Meat and Tomatoes
An American traditional favorite
What could be more satisfying any time of the year than a warm and soothing bowl of chili? While most chili recipes just call for canned tomatoes or prepared tomato sauce, when you've got fresh tomatoes there's no excuse not to use them! Just blanch them first so you can easily remove the skins and crush them.
Everyone has a different way to make chili, and there are countless variations possible - though tomatoes are almost always part of the recipe unless making a white chili. Here, I've prepared a spicy chili of ground venison meat, acorn squash, garbanzo beans, hot and sweet peppers, chili poweder, Chinese Five Spice, and a few "secret ingredients". Of course, my fresh garden tomatoes are no secret at all! Topped with a dollop of sour cream it's hearty and delicious.
32. Roast Pork Loin with Tomato, Juniper and Rosemary
A beautiful Italian roast
This recipe is pretty much simplicity defined. A boneless pork loin is seasoned with fresh rosemary, juniper berries, salt and pepper before being roasted at a high temperature in the oven. Then, it finishes cooking at a low temperature on the stove top with pureed Italian plum tomatoes. It can be prepared of course with quality San Marzano canned tomatoes, but if you have them fresh?
Absolutely use them in this wonderful classic Italian dish which I learned from Marcella Hazan's cookbooks.
Marcella Hazan is my Italian cooking "goddess" - I've learned nearly everything I know from her. This cookbook is one of those I consider a "must have" in my kitchen as it features many elegant yet simple dishes you can prepare to wow your family with Northern Italian specialties.
33. Tuscan Chicken
Fresh tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes combined for hearty flavor.
This is another recipe from the Perfect Italian cookbook linked above. It's a wonderfully satisfying casserole dish to feed a family or any kind of gathering. It takes some time to prepare as it uses a lot of different vegetables, the chicken needs to brown first on the stove top, and then it all bakes together in the oven for an hour. But the result is well worth the wait - especially when prepared with lovely fresh garden tomatoes!
Tomatoes and Vegetables
Great side dishes - or vegetarian entrees
34. Khatte Chole (Hot Sour Chickpeas)
A flavorful Indian dish
Prepare a hearty Indian stew of tomatoes, onion, ginger, chickpeas and spices. The flavors of cinnamon, cumin, coriander and fenugreek combine for a complex and satisfying dish, especially if served with rice or naan bread.
35. Tomato and Basil Tart
For a break from your typical pizza...
The combination of tomatoes, basil and mozzarella may be classic for a margarita pizza, but you can give them more of a French cuisine feeling by preparing a savory tart instead.
The difference is in the crust - the tart pastry is a rich combination of butter, egg and flour - and it is slowly cooked in the oven until the tomatoes have an almost roasted flavor.
This makes for a wonderful lunch entree by itself with a little green salad - or serve it as an elegant vegetable side dish at dinner time!
The two recipes above come from this wonderful cookbook by Christine Ingram. It features 300 recipes all of which put vegetables in the spotlight and showcase how to make great vegetarian entrees that will satisfy, nourish and also delight the tastebuds. Lots of great dishes to bring to dinner parties and potlucks, and also a section of "Virtually Vegetarian" dishes which will help the omnivore appreciate more vegetable-centric cooking.
36. Simmered Summer Squash with Tomatoes
This dish is a great summer light lunch on its own. But served over or with rice or pasta, it can make a satisfying vegetarian dinner with Mexican flair. It combines fresh summer squash and tender zucchini, onions, tomatoes, peppers and fresh herbs for delicious results.
Want to give it a try yourself? The full recipe can be found at my food blog.
37. Tomato Frittata
Why make an ordinary omelette when you can make a frittata?
Have you ever made a frittata before? If not, it's easy. It's basically an open-faced omelette slowly cooked with the additional ingredients (vegetables, meat and cheese) mixed into the raw eggs so they can cook together. To finish it off, it is classic to put a frittata under the broiler to give it nice crisp on top, and you can enjoy it both hot or cold - it's a classic in many Italian buffet lunches.
Fresh tomatoes are an excellent addition to a frittata, combined with mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, slow-cooked onions...use your imagination and inspiration! Here I've made a frittata with tomatoes, red onions, basil and cheese.
I learned to make frittata from Marcella Hazan's excellent "Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking" cookbook. It is one of the "bibles" of my kitchen collection and she will teach you all the specifics of how to make a basic frittata and then accent it to your choosing with fresh vegetables, cheese, and/or meat.
38. Lentil and Sweet Potato Stew with Tomatoes
It's fall and before the frost hits the ground, it's time to use up those last tomatoes on the vine and combine with hearty fall vegetables and legumes. This recipe is adapted from one which came with my Cucina Ferrari food club shipment for October 2012. I wanted to enjoy the wonderful green lentils in that shipment with some of my remaining plum tomatoes, and this came out very satisfying and delicious. The recipe doubles easily to make enough stew to enjoy for a whole week - or to feed a large crowd or family.
Prep time 15 min
- Total time 60 min
Ingredients for 4 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil • 1 yellow onion - chopped • 1 garlic clove - minced • 1 teaspoon salt • 32 ounces vegetable or chicken stock • 2 sweet potatoes - peeled and cut into small cubes • 1 cup plum tomatoes - peeled and roughly chopped • 1 cup lentils • fresh ground pepper • fresh chopped parsley • fresh grated parmesan cheese (optional)
Heat olive oil, onion and garlic in a heavy stockpot or dutch oven until tender but not browned, about 5 minutes.
Add salt and pepper, adjusting to taste and stirring until well mixed, about 2 minutes.
Add stock, potatoes, tomatoes and lentils to the sauteed onions and garlic. Increase heat and bring to a boil for one minute, then reduce heat and simmer for approximately 40 minutes. The stew is ready to serve when the sweet potatoes are cooked through and tender.
Adjust seasoning to taste and serve garnished with parsley and/or grated cheese.
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Mexican Recipes with Tomatoes
39. Huevos Rancheros
The classic Mexican egg dish for brunch, breakfast or lunch.
The perfect Mexican-style breakfast for a Sunday brunch - or anytime you want a hearty meal. Regular scrambled eggs are amped up with chopped fresh tomatoes, charred peppers, cheese and freshly prepared tortilla strips.
40. Tomato Rice and Beans
A wonderful Mexican side dish - or main meal!
Rice and beans - it's a classic combination in a great deal of Latin American cooking.
You can jazz up simple rice and beans by broiling fresh tomatoes, onions and garlic, pureeing them, and then adding them to the rice while it's cooking. Add in some carrots and fresh green beans, serve with warm tortillas and a salsa or guacamole, and you've got a satisfying and healthy meal!
I also like serving this on the side after grilling up a nice steak or seafood dish.
This recipe comes from "The Complete Mexican, South American & Caribbean Cookbook", which is a great resource for any home chef looking to explore Latin American cooking. The recipes are easy to follow and all well illustrated.
41. Pan-Fried Sea Bream with Lime and Tomato Salsa
A quick and easy weeknight dinner
This is another winning recipe from The Complete Mexican, South American and Caribbean Cookbook listed above. After a quick lime juice-based marinade, the fish filets are quickly pan-fried. Fresh tomatoes are mixed with the remaining marinade and flash-fried with the fish at the end, giving the "salsa" a nice quickly-cooked flavor. This recipe proves how easy successful fish cookery can be in any home kitchen - just make sure you have good quality, fresh fish as their taste should really shine through in this preparation. Other white fish such as orange roughy or red snapper can easily be substituted for sea bream.
42. Mexican Pasta with Bell Peppers
A colorful and healthy pasta dish
This recipe is a great way to enjoy colorful bell peppers and fresh tomatoes in a Mexican-inspired pasta sauce. The bell peppers and black beans are cooked gently in broth while a fresh tomato salsa is combined with a light sour cream and cottage cheese sauce. Mix it all together with some cooked pasta and enjoy!
This recipe comes from Linda Ferrari's excellent cookbook of healthy and light pasta dishes. Although these recipes are low in calories and fat, they are super rich in flavor and you'll never know that you're cooking "light". I'm always discovering new recipes to try from this book, with over 125 included to choose from.
Who doesn't love nachos?
Almost everyone loves nachos - who can resist crispy tortilla chips baked with melted cheese, chili or beans and topped with cool tomato salsa, guacamole, sour cream...yum! Of course, nachos can be pretty greasy and heavy too if you order them in a restaurant, yet they are super easy to make at home and much healthier if you control the ingredients yourself. I like to make my own fresh tortilla chips, then bake an individual sized serving bowl with fresh cheese and black beans. Top it with some fresh homemade salsa, hot peppers and green onions and it's a wonderful and filling lunchtime meal.
44. Mexican Vegetable Soup
A spicy twist on a healthy favorite
Vegetable soup doesn't have to be boring if you dress it up with some Mexican flavors and spices. This delicious soup features cumin, garlic and chili powder to enhance this soup based on fresh tomatoes, carrots, corn, potatoes, onion, zucchini, green beans and cabbage.
For fun, serve with tortilla strips, salsa, sour cream, shredded cheese and cilantro on the side so everyone can dress up their soup with their favorite toppings and flavors.
This wonderful little cookbook is a great introductory volume on Mexican food for the home chef. Every recipe is colorfully photographed and described with easy to follow directions. Along with this recipe for Mexican Vegetable Soup, you will find classic dishes like Beef Enchiladas, Turkey with Mole, Southwestern Seafood Stew and all of your favorite Mexican salsas, salads and side dishes.
Pizza Pizza Pizza!
More fun pizza recipes to try that use fresh tomatoes and/or tomato sauce...
45. Fresh Tomato and Mozzarella Pizza
No "Sauce" Required
Here's a visually delightful recipe, especially if you have different color ripe tomatoes to enjoy. Prepare your pizza for baking by slicing the tomatoes thinly, and toss them with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Put sliced or shredded mozzarella down first on top of the pizza dough, then arrange the tomato slices on top. Bake and finish off with fresh basil leaves before serving. You couldn't enjoy a better summer lunch than this!
46. Tomato and Eggplant Pie
No cheese needed for this satisfying pizza
Here I've built a yummy pizza starting with sliced eggplant rounds and then sliced tomatoes, dressed with thinly sliced onions, olive oil, salt and pepper. After baking and cooling slightly I've added freshly torn basil for color and flavor. This is a very satisfying pizza with the layer of eggplant slices, and with a flavor similar to eggplant parm without the extra fat and calories from frying and melted cheese.
47. Mexican Pizza
A favorite in many pizzerias...now you can make it at home!
Top your pizza dough with chopped fresh tomatoes, cooked black beans, red onion slices, black olives and Monterey Jack cheese. Bake and before serving, add some nice dollops of guacamole. To spice it up, add jalapeno peppers or a little chili pepper before baking. This pizza is one of my favorites!
48. Rainbow Chard Pizza with Fresh Tomatoes
Perfect for the Autumn harvest
This year my tomato plants actually gave me a great burst of flavorful, ripe fruit well into October as the cooler weather and rain allowed was conducive to fall growth. Combined with great fall friendly greens like chard, these tomatoes made for some excellent late-season meals such as this Rainbow Chard Pizza with Tomatoes and Cheese. I love this satisfying pizza for a warming lunch as it's so easy to prepare and delicious as well. If you'd like to try my recipe, you'll find it at my food blog: Rainbow Chard Pizza at South Jersey Foodie.
Green Tomato Recipes
Great for the end of the season
49. Green Tomato Salsa Verde
If you love traditional salsa verde made with tomatillos, consider making a variation with green tomatoes instead. Green tomatoes can be simmered with onion, peppers, olive oil and spices before being pureed and seasoned with cilantro and lemon juice. You can freeze this easily as well, making it a great solution for using up green tomatoes at the end of the season.
50. Roasted Acorn Squash with Green Tomato and Jalapeno Jam
Another great use for end-of-the-season green tomatoes
I loved the recipe for Roasted Acorn Squash with Green Tomato and Jalapeno Jamfrom the Closet Cooking website. It was so simple to make and the jam was yummy enough, I'd use it for other things - but this makes a perfect meal all by itself. The combination of fall harvest squash and end-of-the-season green tomatoes is perfect for someone who likes to cook with the seasons.
Tomatoes...gotta love 'em!
Well, if you've made it to the end of this page, my congratulations to you. Got a fresh tomato recipe that you love and want to share? Leave a comment here...my hope is to next summer complete a "part 2" to get to 100 fresh tomato recipes, and I'd love to feature your favorites after I've tested them in my kitchen!
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