A few weeks ago, my cousin posted a picture (on social media) of three nice, healthy tomato plants his wife had carefully planted in a large scoop of soil in a wheelbarrow rolled up next to their house. All of their online "friends" know that, as a lab supervisor at a local hospital, she is working quite a bit of overtime at these days. Due to the circumstances, they decided to forego on having a big garden and instead to cultivate a few tomato plants and buy all of their other fresh produce from our well stocked local farmers' markets and roadside stands.
"Why the special treatment of tomatoes?" you may wonder. Well, I know the answer to that due to my dad's and grandfather's years of dedication to their spring and summer growth of large, juicy heirloom tomatoes. They would skillfully "tend" to those tomato plants to achieve their goal of producing enough tomatoes to use during the season and to "can" (preserve) for enjoyment on special occasions throughout the year. Ah! Just thinking of how delicious they were incites me to prepare a few recipes with tomatoes. I hope you will try them, too.
Traditional tomato pie
1 (10-inch) pie shell, partially baked (very lightly browned)
4 large eggs, beaten
1-1/2 cup Half & Half
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried mustard
2 cups grated mild Cheddar cheese
2 large ripe tomatoes, cut into tiny chunks
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Beat the eggs and Half & Half well. Beat in the flour, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt and mustard until frothy and well combined. Stir in the cheese. Stir in the tomato chunks. Pour this mixture into the lightly baked pie shell. Bake this tomato pie at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes or just until the center of the pie is set. This recipe makes eight delicious slices.
Angel hair pasta salad
1 pound angel hair pasta
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 medium bell pepper, chopped
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 (16-ounce) bottle Zesty Italian dressing
1 large cucumber, washed and chopped
In a large saucepan, bring eight cups of water to a rapid boil. Break the pasta in half into the boiling water. Boil for about five minutes. Drain the pasta well and rinse immediately in cold water. Drain the pasta again. Put the well drained pasta into a large serving bowl. Add chopped vegetables and dressing. Stir until well combined and refrigerate overnight.
1 medium yellow or white onion, chopped
1 Red Delicious apple, chopped
1 teaspoon margarine or cooking spray
1 can (6-7-ounce) white tuna, drained
2 cups cooked tomatoes, drained
Optional condiments: coconut, raisins, nuts, sliced scallions, chopped hard-boiled eggs
In a large, preferably non-stick skillet, sauté the onion and apple in the margarine. Add the white tuna and cooked, drained tomatoes. Season with curry powder to taste. Cook until sizzling. Reduce heat to warm. Serve over hot rice with a choice of the condiments. This recipe makes four servings.
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