I must admit that I have not been in the kitchen at all much since on holidays, understandable yes, but on returning home after a few weeks break I have fallen a little out of the habit and have been relying more on easy, quick, convenience foods. This does not mean ‘fast-foods’ as I despise chain food groups and try to avoid them at all costs. For me, instead of preparing from scratch, its pre-made organic pasta sauces, pre-cooked chickens and salads etc.
What I did notice on returning from our vacation, is our tomato plant exploded with the fabulous month of sun we have been enjoying! You cannot beat freshly grown or locally picked tomatoes as they are bursting with flavour and you do notice the difference between ones that have travelled further or from large-scale farms. Our small cherry variety are super sweet and world’s away in flavour from even some of the organic ones I have been buying. The sweetest part? Watching my son’s excitement as he spots the newly ripened ones on the vine in our garden and jumps to pick them!
It is a medley of tomatoes out there at the moment; their blazing colour of reds, purples, oranges and yellows in all different sizes and shapes was alluring enough to get me back into the spirit of cooking! You can never feel guilty about eating too many tomatoes as they are full of antioxidants including Lycopene which have been linked to heart and bone health. The top three vitamins are C, A and K in that order, help keep blood sugar levels in check and perhaps provide some anti-cancer benefits (at the top of the list is prostate cancer for men’s heath). In addition, they will give you glowing skin, hair, eyes and good teeth!
A colleague of my husband’s wanted to know what to do with all these tomatoes, so I thought I’d start by inspiring some of my favourite recipes which I will slowly post unless anyone wants them urgently!
There are literally thousands of ways to use tomatoes, and I figure why mess with them when they taste so good?
So here’s to keeping it simple with my top 10 all-time tomato recipes…I will post any on request right away.
1. Simple but superb tomato, oregano, basil pasta sauce.
2. Tomato, buffalo mozzarella and basil salad
3. Tomato and garlic bruschetta
4. Tomato, egg and pancetta/bacon pizza
5. Mixed tomato and mint salad
6. Tomato Tarte Tatin
7. Tomato and goat’s cheese tartlets
8. Tomato rice pockets
9. Tomato relish
10. Mussels with tomato, chorizo, white wine broth and frites or crusty baguette