Recipes to make the most of the season’s tomatoes

Three tomato salad, Katy Pearson, recipe, #whatkatydid

Salad: With three tomatoes

Here’s an odd thing. Until about two months ago, I didn’t like tomatoes.

I was that annoying person who would actually pick them out of sandwiches – and moan that they’d left tomato “gunk” in there.

Then my toddler started loving cheese and tomato on toast. And, I don’t know if it’s the repeated exposure to them, the eating them and saying “yuuuuuum” with enthusiasm, or what, but suddenly I’m loving tomatoes. I’m literally eating them by the handful.

So when the British Tomato Growers’ Association, in a bid to raise awareness of the British tomato industry, sent me these lurvely tomato-based recipes, I was more than a little interested.

The association wants to get us shoppers to specifically chose British toms when doing their weekly shop – and as it’s currently the height of British tomato season, there are a wide range of locally grown tomatoes in stores.

And to be honest, if these recipes don’t get the tastebuds tingling, I don’t know what will…

THREE-TOMATO SALAD WITH AVOCADO AND BACON

This gorgeous platter of tomatoes uses a trio of British favourites – classic, cherry and baby plum – with sliced avocado and crispy bacon, dressed with a wholegrain mustard, cider vinegar and olive oil dressing. Yum!

Serves 2-4
Prep time: 15min
Cook time: 5min

  • 6 British Classic Tomatoes, sliced
  • 12 British Cherry Tomatoes, halved
  • 12 British Baby Plum Tomatoes
  • 1 ripe avocado, halved, pitted and peeled
  • 6 rashers streaky bacon
  • A few basil leaves
    Dressing:
  • 3tbsp olive oil
  • 2tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Preheat the grill.

2 Share the slices of classic tomato between 2 serving plates, or arrange them on 1 large platter. Scatter the cherry tomato halves and baby plum tomatoes on top.

3 Slice the avocado neatly, and arrange on top of the tomatoes. Put the rashers of bacon onto the grill pan and grill until crispy.

4 While the bacon is cooking, make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, cider vinegar and wholegrain mustard. Season with a pinch of sugar, salt and pepper.

5 Snip the bacon rashers over the tomatoes, then serve, sprinkled with the dressing and a few basil leaves.

Cook’s tip: Choose you own favourite British tomatoes for this wonderful salad – try a combination of Beef, Large Vine, Classic, Baby Plum or Cherry – just aim to choose 3 varieties with a size or shape variation.

WARM QUINOA SALAD WITH ROASTED VEG AND CHERRY TOMATOES

Quinoa, cherry tomatoes, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydid

Quinoa: With cherry tomatoes

Try this on-trend salad, made with cooked quinoa and roasted vegetables, with luscious British Cherry Tomatoes and a lively lemon dressing.

Serves 4
Prep time: 15min
Cook time: 25min

  • 250g quinoa (white, red or black – or a combination)
  • 2tsp vegetable stock powder (or 1 vegetable stock cube)
  • 2 courgettes, cut into chunks
  • 1 red and 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and cut into chunks
  • 1 red onion, sliced into wedges
  • 2tbsp olive oil
  • 16 British cherry on the vine tomatoes, halved
  • 4 handfuls of young spinach or watercress
  • 80g feta cheese
  • 2tsp chia seedsDressing:
  • 3tbsp olive oil
  • 2tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan oven 180°C, Gas Mark 6.

2 Rinse the quinoa in a sieve, then put it into a saucepan with the stock powder or crumbled stock cube. Add double the volume of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes.

3 While the quinoa is cooking, put the courgettes, peppers and red onion into a roasting tin and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until tender. Remove from the oven and stir through the cherry tomatoes.

4 Drain any excess liquid from the quinoa, then mix it through the roasted vegetables with the spinach or watercress.

5 For the dressing, whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then drizzle over the salad. Serve, sprinkled with crumbled feta cheese and chia seeds.

Cook’s tip: You can roast the courgettes, peppers and red onion the day before – then just cool, cover and refrigerate, ready to mix with the other ingredients the next day.

For more lovely recipes like these, go to www.britishtomatoes.co.uk

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