I’ve been a ketchup fetishist since infancy, and I came around to tomato sauce circa 1997 (for the first decade of my life, I ordered my pizza without sauce), but tomatoes in their un-puréed form? Absolutely not. I spent over 20 years picking them out of my salads and sandwiches, avoiding caprese like the plague, and begging my mom not to make “toe-mah-toe” sandwiches in my presence. Looking back, I’m shocked my parents ever resorted to grounding me as a teenager, when threatening mandatory daily tomato consumption would have been more than enough to scare me straight.
For the record, it’s tough out there for a tomato hater. Tomatoes are seemingly everywhere, and people get surprisingly offended when you say you don’t like them. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve upset more peeps with my anti-tomato stance over the years than with my aversion to dogs and babies…
Thank God I finally came around.
I’m not sure exactly what happened, but at some point around my 25th birthday, I suddenly stopped loathing raw tomatoes. Something clicked, and I’m pleased to report that the fruit no longer makes me want to hurl. I mean, I still prefer cooked tomatoes, and I’m never going to be someone that eats a tomato like an apple (just gave myself goose bumps thinking about it), but I’m truly psyched about my tomato-based progress. Onward to glory!
As I hopped on the tomato bandwagon around the same time I started this blog, there are plenty of tomato-centric recipes in the archives. And since we’re in the midst of tomato season (and you just endured a crazy tomato rant), I thought I’d put together a little roundup to celebrate.
p.s. I love you. From my head tomatoes.*
Domesticate ME!’s Favorite Tomato Recipes:
1. Caprese Quinoa Bake. If you make one recipe from this roundup, please God let it be this sassy caprese sitch. You know how I feel about quinoa bakes, and the fact that this one is still my favorite (even after spring’s lasagna miracle) speaks volumes. Get down on it.
2. Avocado Toast with Charred Tomatoes, Garlic Shrimp and Fried Eggs. This is avocado toast in summer black tie, peeps. If you’re feeling outdoorsy and have access to a grill (jealousss), I highly recommend grilling your shrimp and tomatoes for a simple, yet thrilling summer brunch/lunch/dinner.
3. Chicken and Goat Cheese Burgers with Peaches, Corn and Cherry Tomatoes. I could use a lot of fancy culinary speak and flowery adjectives to sell you on this recipe, but instead I’ll just say: YASSSSS. KWEEEEN.
4. Grilled Eggplant with Fresh Mozzarella, Tomatoes and Basil Vinaigrette. I like to make this with a giant, juicy heirloom tomato and buffalo mozzarella, and serve it with some grilled bread and a bottle of very cold white wine. You should do the same. (Any leftovers should be turned into fancy grilled cheese.)
5. Caprese Bites with Honey-Balsamic. These teeny-tiny wonders are both adorable and delicious. Show me a party guest that doesn’t appreciate those two things and I’ll show you a liar (or a weirdo).
6. Summer Ratatouille Tartines with Burrata. Summer on toast. You can also turn these into bite-size crostini for your entertaining pleasure. They’d be almost as adorable as the Caprese Bites.
7. Spaghetti with Cherry Tomato Sauce, Mozzarella and Basil. I’m sitting here wondering how to articulate the Italian gesture where you kiss your fingertips and throw your hand in the air?
8. Cheesy Pesto Chicken Panini with Prosciutto and Tomatoes. Never underestimate the power of a good sandwich. Please make sure to slice your glorious August tomatoes extra thick for this bad boy.
9. Grilled Halibut with Corn and Cherry Tomato Salsa. This Dude Diet classic harnesses the magical powers of cherry tomatoes and sweet corn to make fish less scary for the world’s seafood skeptics. Try it, you’ll like it. (Logan did.)
10. Roasted Tomato Basil Soup. Swap out the canned tomatoes in this recipe for fresh, and prepare for the sweet, sweet bliss of tomato-basil perfection. (I know it’s unbearably hot right now and the thought of soup is life-ending, but there may be some chilly/rainy summer nights ahead. You could also be very impressive and forward-thinking by freezing soup for ze fall/winter.)
*Anyone else watching the trainwreck that is First Day of Camp?? Let’s discuss.
As always, I’m thrilled to be a part of Food Network’s Summer Soirée this week. For more tomato-themed awesomeness check out the blogs below.
The Heritage Cook: Rice and Cheese Stuffed Roasted Tomatoes (Gluten-Free)
The Lemon Bowl: 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Beef & Eggplant
Homemade Delish: Sweet Tomato Jam
Healthy Eats: 7 Seasonal Uses for Fresh Tomatoes
Creative Culinary: Warm Tomato and Mozzarella Bruschetta
Weelicious: Heirloom Tomato Salad
Dishin & Dishes: Cobb Salad with Homemade Roasted Onion Vinaigrette
Swing Eats: Tiny Insalata Caprese
The Wimpy Vegetarian: Tomato and Swiss Tart
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Tomato Pickle
Taste with the Eyes: Quiche with a Black Quinoa Crust, Heirloom Tomatoes, Spinach, Goat Cheese
Red or Green: Summer Pasta With No-Cook Tomato Sauce
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Heirloom Tomato & Crouton Casserole (Scalloped Tomatoes)
The Mom 100: Chopped Salad with Chicken, Tomatoes and Lemon Thyme Dressing
FN Dish: 10 Ways to Be a Tomato Whisperer