I have been in California for nearly two weeks and am just getting my head back in the game. When I left for the West Coast it was still warm and a little muggy here, with the first hints of fall, but when I returned it was full on sweater weather. Even some of the leaves around my house are starting to turn orange and red. Surprisingly I still had a few tomatoes in my share – I used them to make this cozy, silky, and deceptively simple soup. I say deceptive because the depth of flavor is so rich and layered, giving a nod to summer produce but looking ahead to fall. Hopefully this soup recipe comes at the right time to take advantage of the last of your tomatoes, while staying warm at the start of what is arguably the best time of year here in New England.
This tart is delicious, almost shockingly good. I made one large tart, and then we ate it for four days, and I could make another one right now and be very happy to eat it again. The star of the dish is really the Mountain Magic tomatoes – they are beautiful, plump, juicy, and flavor packed. About the size of a large cherry tomato they are perfect for roasting, they keep their moisture and gain a lovely rich and sweet flavor after about an hour in the oven. These tomatoes when combined with roasted zucchini, zeypher squash, eggplant, a flakey sour cream pie dough, and held together with melty gruyere cheese make a total knock out of a dish. This is something that, like us, you could eat as a side for a few days or serve it with a green salad for a lunch entree. If you aren’t as selfish, share the love and give this tart as a gift or bring it as offering to the next party you attend – it will not disappoint.
Tomatoes are kind of a big deal. They have a short season and are only really, really good for that period. This is why they are coveted and celebrated when they are in their prime. Recently there have been tomato festivals and events at most farmers’ markets. The best advice I’ve gotten about using these heirloom varieties, which I will expand a little as it was told to me much more succinctly and in a less appropriate for public way, is this: these tomatoes are naturally very delicious on their own so don’t do anything to take away from that. So with that in mind, and hopefully staying true to it, I made this corn and tomato salad. I used the bright yellow/orange “Goldie” variety because I was taken by the color and I wanted something a little sweeter, but any of the varieties would work great and look beautiful.