Inside: Use ripe tomatoes and crusty baguette for this simple, three-ingredient, baked side dish. Fresh flavours and basic ingredients pair well with red meat, fish and seasonal salads. Done in 30 minutes.
*This post is sponsored by Atlantic Superstore. I’m proud to partner with brands I use, love and recommend.
Sometimes the best recipes are the simple ones. As we head into the unofficial start of summer here in Canada, I love to think of ways to be creative in the kitchen that don’t take up a ton of time, but that bring something fresh and local to our meals.
Using local ingredients is quite important to me. As you know, my husband and I love to spend a lot of time in the kitchen and, little known fact! My husband grew up on an organic vegetable farm in the heart of our province! Eating local and fresh is literally in his blood. Not only does it mean our food is healthy and tasty, but we understand that buying from local producers directly helps our local economy and supports local growers.
It was no surprise to me that Atlantic Superstore is one of the largest suppliers of local produce and meat in our region…so I’m really glad to be partnered with them to celebrate all the benefits of this movement. (And the food, let’s not forget the tasty, tasty, food!!)
This is the time of year when we start to haul out the grill for our famous grilled pizzas, but it hasn’t been warm enough this year for that yet. I love tomatoes, but know they are one of those foods that can be quite polarizing – you love or you hate them! When I was challenged by the team at Atlantic Superstore to create something that not only included something I love, but also something in-season, I knew locally-sourced tomatoes were the way to go. I whipped up something that is inspired by pizza and bruschetta, but that is a little more hearty.
Here’s my take on Cheesy Tomato Bread Bake!
It’s a bit like a tomato bread pudding mixed with a cheesy tomato bread you’d make under the broiler. The key part to this recipe is the fresh, large tomatoes that you peel and use as the flavouring for the crusty bread.
In traditional bread pudding, you’d soak the bread in some sort of milk or custard prior to baking, but in this case I decided to soak it in the full flavoured tomatoes! The result is something that is rustic and feels very old-world Italian.
We paired our tomato bake with a Roasted Chicken (we got in the Free-From section at our Atlantic Superstore), and a basic salad with fresh PC Organic Arugula, balsamic vinegar and coarse sea salt.
The cheese makes this dish and I think it’s what makes it kid-friendly too. Everyone in our house gobbled this right up! If you wanted to take this up a notch, I’d boost the flavour with added garlic and herbs and maybe top it with a more sophisticated cheese like buffalo mozzarella or something more like a traditional pizza.
As for how to make your own version of cheesy tomato bread bake? The recipe card is below! Let me know if you make it and how it turns out. I’d love to know what additions you make to suit you and your family’s tastes.
- 5 ripe tomatoes
- 1 medium size baguette
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 2 TBSP sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- Grease a 9x13 glass dish and set aside. Preheat oven to 400F and place rack in the middle.
- Peel tomatoes and cut them down the centre. Remove the seeds and the centre core to leave just the nice red flesh.
- Pulse them coarsely in a food processor along with the sugar, salt and pepper. There should be some chunks still left. Don't puree them completely.
- Chop the baguette coarsely and spread the pieces into the prepped baking dish.
- Pour the melted butter over the bread and mix to distribute it.
- Pour the tomatoes over the bread and incorporate well.
- Bake uncovered in the oven for 20-30 minutes. Remove and top with cheese and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted.
- Allow it to stand for five minutes before serving.
To peel the tomatoes, cut off the stems and slice an 'x' in the bottom. Place them into boiling water for about 90 seconds. Then remove them and submerge them in a bowl of ice water. The skin should rub right off!
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 171 Total Fat: 7g Saturated Fat: 4g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 2g Cholesterol: 17mg Sodium: 522mg Carbohydrates: 23g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 6g Protein: 6g
I feel a bit inspired to bring more fresh tomatoes into our regular routine now. It’s easy to take such a simple, always available ingredient for granted. I think my next attempt will be to find a way to bring more fun and flavour to a BLT sandwich, which is a snack we eat almost every weekend.