Real Food for Real Life

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The end of summer...

The last of Christopher's tomatoes...

 The end of summer...its enough to make me cry...soon enough it will be cold and miserable here (at least for me).  This October has been full of crazy weather, high 80's on some days, followed by low 60's, and some of the nights have been in THE THIRTIES...but, this is Ohio and we really can't expect to be consistent...

With the unpredictable weather, Christopher and I harvested the last of our container crops last week.  I pickled more jalapeños, dried herbs, and have been cooking with the bell peppers...but that last basket of cheery red tomatoes?  Tomato Pie!!  This simple pie is one of my favorite treats of summer and a fitting way to end the summer tomatoes.  Give this a try if you have any (good) tomatoes lying around and try to make summer last just a bit longer...

Tomato Pie

2 lbs. ripe tomatoes (summer tomatoes are the best)
2 tbs, cornstarch
1 prepared pie crust (purchased or homemade)
1 cup light mayo
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese shreds (I used 2%)
a big handful fresh basil (we grew this too)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.  Cut the tomatoes into smallish chunks, no need to peel, if there is a lot of the wet, seedy pulp, go ahead and let that fall out; let the tomato rest in a bowl while you prepare the crust, basil, and mayo.  Prepare the crust in a pie plate, sprinkle a handful of the cheese on the bottom and set aside; mix the mayo and the remaining cheese; julienne the basil.  In this time some liquid has accumulated around the tomato chunks...pour that off and toss the pieces with the cornstarch.

Layer 1/2 of the tomatoes in the pie plate, sprinkle on 1/2 of the basil, and drop a bit less than 1/2 of the mayo-cheese mixture in tiny spoonfuls across the top.  Take your fingertips and spread out the mayo a bit for better coverage.  repeat the layer with the remaining ingredients.  Place the prepared pie on a cookie sheet to catch any drips and bake for 10 minutes.  reduce the heat to 350 and bake for an additional 40-45 minutes, or until the juices are bubbly and thick, and the mayo-cheese topping is nicely browned.  Remove from the oven and let rest at least 20 minutes before serving.  Best warm or at room temperature.  This is a wonderful light lunch or dinner served with a green salad, or it makes a great breakfast all on its own...I should know, I ate this for the rest of the week.
Tomato Pie Perfection...

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