30 Days of Perfect Summer Tomatoes
Day 1: Grilled Eggplant, Apricot and Tomato Salad
This simple summer salad from Portland, Oregon chef Joshua McFadden perfectly showcases summer produce at its peak. This is the time that tomatoes are sweet and juicy in their purest form. And when corn season gets into full swing, cut the sweet, raw kernels off the cob and toss them into this dish.
Day 2: Uovo in Raviolo with Hand-Grated Tomato Sauce
This dish is just as much about the pasta as it is about the tomatoes. You can buy many kinds of stuffed and filled fresh pasta, but you won’t find these oversize ricotta-and-egg-filled ravioli in a shop. That’s why they’re the ultimate filled pasta to make at home. The fresh, hand-grated tomato sauce, which you make using the large holes of a box grater, truly brings the dish together.
Day 3: Chilled Tomato Soup with Parsley-Olive Salsa
In the warm, steamy summer months, you may not want to indulge in a piping hot bowl of tomato bisque. But how will you get your tomato soup fix? The answer is this super fresh, cold tomato soup. Pizzana chef Daniele Uditi’s ultrasilky gazpacho-like soup (fresh veg pureed with bread and ice) comes with a nutty, chunky topper.
Day 4: Green Zebra Tomatoes with Tomato-Dashi Sorbet
This recipe is truly an ode to this warm weather fruit in the most creative way. F&W Best New Chef 2017 Noah Sandoval, of Chicago’s Oriole, highlights summer’s sweetest tomatoes by serving them alongside a savory dashi-and-tomato-water-based sorbet. The dish is cold and refreshing—ideal for a hot summer day.
Day 5: Heirloom Tomatoes with Ricotta and Savory Granola
If you needed a reminder, summer is prime time for juicy tomatoes. To dress up summer's very best, F&W's Justin Chapple combines them with lemony ricotta and savory granola for crunch to round out the dish. The granola, which combines toasty oats with pistachios and sunflower seeds, would also be fantastic in any green salad.
Day 6: Gemelli with Peach-and-Yellow Tomato Pork Ragu
This unexpected summer dish combines two of the season's best ingredients: tomatoes and peaches. Grated ginger cuts the natural sweetness of the fruit and the richness of the braised pork. Make this for your next al fresco dinner party and each and every guest will be asking you for the recipe.
Day 7: Tomato, Haricots Verts and Potato Salad
This rustic Italian salad is a great way to showcase perfect, in-season produce. It's filled with plump cherry tomatoes, mixed baby potatoes and crunchy haricots verts. We think this salad is great for a picnic or a summer lunch by the pool. Enjoy it as your main or alongside your barbecue favorites.
Day 8: Fried Green Tomato Double Cheeseburger
Just because this is about tomatoes, doesn't mean it can't also be about burgers. “Anyone who loves a good burger has a soft spot for the Big Mac,” says chef Edward Lee, of Louisville’s Whiskey Dry. In his ode to the fast food classic, he swaps the middle bun for a crisp fried green tomato that absorbs all of the savory juices from the beef, melty cheese and sweet chile mayo. “More bread is just boring,” he says. “The fried tomato adds crunch and a mild acidity.”
Day 9: Marinated Feta with Nectarine and Tomato Fattoush
Day 10: Spinach-and-Ricotta-Stuffed Tomatoes with Piquillo Peppers
At Commanderie de Peyrassol, the wonderful Provençal winery, chef Guillaume Delauné uses ingredients from his kitchen garden to make dishes like these excellent stuffed tomatoes. He uses a melon baller to scoop out the insides of the tomatoes, leaving a sturdy shell to hold the spinach-and-cheese filling. The accompanying sauce is made from the scooped-out tomato seeds and juices.
Day 11: Tomatoes with Herbs and Almond Vinaigrette
New York City chef Dan Kluger makes a deeply flavorful vinaigrette for summer's sweetest and juiciest tomatoes. Instead of dry-roasting almonds for his salad, Kluger toasts them in olive oil until they're crisp and golden, then uses the richly flavored oil to make a tangy dressing. Talk about taking ingredients to the next level.
Day 12: Rye Crisps with Tomatoes and Sardines
This tasty snack recipe from Food & Wine's Justin Chapple makes the most of canned sardines. Chapple prepares a bright herb mayo to spread on rye crisps, then tops them with a cherry tomato salad and good-quality sardines. The juices from the tomatoes soften the rye crisps ever so slightly.
Day 13: Risotto-Style Penne with Tomatoes and Zucchini Blossoms
Day 14: Mexican Eggs Baked in Tomato Sauce
In our humble opinion, tomatoes for breakfast are extremely underrated — especially when paired with eggs. Those of you who have had it know that the shakshuka is truly a beautiful thing. This Mexican version uses fresh tomatoes as well as jarred tomato sauce to amp up the flavor in the simple and delicious breakfast bake.
Day 15: Rare Roast Beef with Pickled Green Tomatoes
This dish from chef Chris Behr of the Rome Sustainable Food Project is a nod to the many similarities between the food of the American South and southern Italy’s cucina povera (peasant cooking). Just like Southerners, Italians pickle their abundance of unripe green tomatoes. Serve these oil-packed ones alongside this thinly sliced beef roast, or layered on sandwiches, tossed in chopped salads or with a charcuterie board.
Day 16: Quinoa Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Tuscan Kale
San Francisco chef Matthew Accarrino of Italian hotspot SPQR makes deliciously light meatballs with a combination of quinoa, Parmigiano and breadcrumbs. He bakes the meatballs before simmering them in a vibrant tomato sauce along with kale. The end result: a healthy and deeply satisfying take on a beloved Italian classic.
Day 17: Tomato Salad with Tomato Water Granita
Chefs Michael Fojtasek and Grae Nonas explore every dimension of the tomato in this ingenious mix of flavors, temperatures and textures. For the flaky, icy granita, the chefs brilliantly strain tomato water using cheesecloth, mix it with honey and vinegar and then freeze it for about four hours on a baking pan.
Day 18: Halibut in Parchment with Corn and Tomatoes
Are you looking for a fresh, light summer weeknight meal? We've got you covered. Chef Kristen Kish keeps it simple by roasting halibut, corn, tomatoes and green beans all in one simple packet, allowing the flavors to merge into one delicious meal. If anything could taste like summer, this would be it.
Day 19: Grilled Tomato Salad with Mozzarella and Unagi Sauce
Everyone loves a good, fresh Caprese salad, but we've got something even better. Chicago chef Stephanie Izard makes the ultimate summer salad with a creamy version of sweet-salty Japanese unagi sauce, which is typically brushed over eel. The flavors are so indescribable you must try it to actualize the deliciousness.
Day 20: Squid with Burst Cherry Tomatoes
In summer, many people don't bother to cook tomatoes. But Tom Colicchio likes to see what flavors he can bring out. "I was just messing around with cherry tomatoes, and I decided to try cooking them low and slow, with garlic," he says. The result: extravagantly juicy tomatoes with amped-up flavor.
Day 21: Smoky Tomato Soup with Gruyère Toast
Mild Spanish smoked paprika—also called pimentón—gives dishes an appealing smokiness. Using the sweetest, ripest tomatoes in season, Melissa Rubel Jacobson makes a simple yet luscious soup flavored with smoked paprika and served with crunchy cheese toasts. You might just have to crank up the air conditioner and enjoy a hot bowl, no matter what the temperature is outside.
Day 22: Spring Pasta with Blistered Cherry Tomatoes
Star chef Mario Batali’s outstanding vegetable pasta boasts juicy roasted tomatoes with asparagus, Broccolini and shavings of ricotta salata cheese. Batali's brilliant method for redeeming out-of-season tomatoes is easy: Buy cherry tomatoes on the vine, place them in a 425-degree oven and blast them for 25 minutes. “You grab the stem end, and pfut!, the skins come right off,” says Mario, though we leave them on for this pasta recipe.
Day 23: Green Tomatoes with Pistachio Relish
Relishes typically contain cooked and pickled vegetables; the one here is mouth-tinglingly tangy. James Syhabout of Oakland, California's Commis makes it by pickling shallots, capers, pistachios and pink peppercorns overnight in Champagne vinegar and olive oil. It's awesome on tomatoes and makes for a flavorful summer side dish for any barbecue.
Day 24: Roasted Tomato Croques with Pickled Peppers
In this summery spin on a croque monsieur, roasted heirloom tomatoes are piled on bread that’s slathered with creamy béchamel sauce. After a generous sprinkle of Gruyère, the croques are toasted till melty and browned, and then topped with spicy homemade pickled peppers. We could literally live on these babies.
Day 25: Beefsteak Tomato and Burrata Salad with Olive Streusel
The crunchy, savory kalamata olive streusel that tops this salad from Bryan and Michael Voltaggio is our new condiment obsession. Toss it in your next kale salad, sprinkle over roasted root vegetables or use it to garnish steamed grains. If you can’t find good beefsteak tomatoes for this dish, use the best greenhouse tomatoes you can get your hands on.
Day 26: Grilled Striped Bass with Indian-Spiced Tomato Salad
Chef Floyd Cardoz of Indian hotspot Paowalla in New York City is an avid fisherman. This summery grilled bass with ginger-spiced tomato salad is the ideal way to showcase a beautiful piece of fish and the season's absolute best produce. We aspire to make this for a delicious weeknight dinner.
Day 27: Tomato Gratin
Day 28: Preserved-Tomato Paccheri
Rather than make conventional tomato sauce, Missy Robbins, chef at Brooklyn’s Lilia, uses her preserving skills to marinate tomatoes in a mix of garlic, spices, citrus and olive oil. The result is a supple, incredibly flavorful coating for the thick, tubular paccheri pasta. It’s also versatile enough to match with red or white wine.
Day 29: Basic Tomato Sauce from Fresh Tomatoes
It would be wrong to have a month of tomato recipes without a stellar one for classic tomato sauce. A good tomato sauce can truly transform a dish. Even a simple dry pasta can become an incredible meal when topped with a perfect tomato sauce. If you keep the tomato sauce simple, the deep flavors of summer tomatoes come through. Plus, a straightforward sauce is easier to transform—with a few additions, it can become anything from a Bloody Mary mix to a vegetable curry.
Day 30: Grilled Salmon with Melted Tomatoes
This summery fish dish is ideal for a last-minute dinner party. It serves ten people and comes together in just 45 minutes. It's also super tasty and certainly offers a kick. Jalapeños not only garnish this sweet-smoky grilled salmon but also infuse the oil used to sauté the fresh tomatoes.