I was so excited when I found out June was my pick for Barefoot Bloggers! I was also really nervous though - pressure!! I pored over all things Ina for several hours, before finally settling on her scalloped tomatoes. I'd seen her make these on her "Farmstand Food" episode several months ago, and I've been thinking about them ever since. And since tomatoes are starting to come into season, I thought it was the perfect time to make this dish. Tomatoes, bread, garlic, and parmesan - how bad could that be?
I used a mixture of several types of tomatoes - some gorgeous heirlooms from our CSA, a few vine-ripened from my own plants, and then I used quartered cherry tomatoes to reach 2 1/2 pounds. The biggest issue that there seemed to be was the moisture in the dish - since tomatoes give off so much moisture, it lead to a little bit soggy bread. However, I think this can be remedied a few ways: 1. Remove the seeds from half the tomatoes. 2. Bake the mixture in the most shallow dish you can. The top formed a nice and crunchy crust, which was the best part. I used a corningware baking dish, but I think next time I will use a 9x13 inch pan. That way, the mixture will be more shallow, giving more crust and less mush.
Overall, this was really very tasty. The tomatoes caramelize a little and have the most rich, delicious flavor. I will definitely keep this in my repertoire this summer, and I hope the other Barefoot Bloggers enjoyed my pick!
One Year Ago: Grilled and Stuffed Portobellos
adapted from Ina Garten
- olive oil
- 2-3 cups cubed French Bread (about 1/2-inch cubes)
- 2 1/2 pounds chopped tomatoes, seeds and pulp removed from about half
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, julienned
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat 2 Tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the bread cubes, and toast, stirring often, until evenly browned, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop the tomatoes and add them to a large bowl. Combine with the garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper, and mix well.
Add the tomato mixture to the bread, and cook an additional 5 minutes, stirring often.
Pour into a 9x13 inch baking dish, and top with the Parmesan cheese. Bake 35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a crust has formed.