August 18th, 2014

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

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Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Heirloom tomatoes are so special, I always stick to preparations that really celebrate their flavor. Stick to uncomplicated soups, sauces, caprese salad, or just devour them sprinkled with salt. Learn more about all the varieties we grow here. This savory crisp is inspired by all of the berry crisps of summer, and apple versions in the fall. If you have fresh herbs, thyme or basil would be a wonderful  addition. Top with a scoop of ricotta or chèvre.

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Chop the tomatoes into a large dice, heirlooms come in many shapes and sizes so larger colorful chunks will work well.

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Transfer the tomatoes to a lightly oiled dish, and gently toss with cornstarch, salt, and pepper. Try using a good quality salt and fresh ground pepper, it will really bring out the flavor of the tomatoes. The savory crisp is equal parts bread crumbs, oats, and flour with butter and grated parmesan. Use salted butter and add just a touch of fresh ground black pepper.

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

I like to use a food processor to pulse the topping into a crumbly mixture with small chunks of butter. You can also cut in the butter using two forks, you’ll definitely notice the oats this way. I like pulsing them together so they have a finer texture. Gently press the tomatoes into an even layer and top with the crumble.

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes. I needed a little extra time to get the top nice and crunchy. If you have leftovers, reheat uncovered in the oven so the top doesn’t get soggy. I served this with a small scoop of ricotta, and crumbled goat cheese would be a nice contrast to the sweet tomatoes. Another idea would be to melt fresh mozzarella over the top. If you’d like to add fresh herbs, try adding basil shreds to the tomatoes or minced thyme into the topping.

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

Heirloom Tomato Crisp

4 cups roughly chopped heirloom tomatoes (any size, shape, or color will do)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

For the crumble:
1/3 cup fresh breadcrumbs or panko
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup whole oats
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan
1/4 cup salted butter, cut into small chunks
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon brown sugar

Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly oil or gratin dish or baking dish. (7 x 11 or 8 x 8 will work nicely). Keep the pan on the small side to keep the crisp deep with a nice crispy topping. Place the tomatoes in the oiled dish and toss with cornstarch, salt, and pepper.

Pulse together crumble ingredients. Use a food processor and pulse until mixture is pebbly with small chunks of butter, or use a pastry cutter or two knives to cut the butter into dry ingredients. Press the tomatoes into an even layer, and then top with the crumble. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes until the tomatoes are bubbly and the topping is browned. Let cool for 5 minutes, serve with a scoop of soft cheese like ricotta or chèvre.

Gluten Free Variation. Use gluten free flour, GF certified oats, and GF breadcrumbs. Can also increase oats and flour to 1/2 cup each and omit breadcrumbs. I have used Bob’s Red Mill GF Flour with good results.

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