We had a bumper crop of garden tomatoes, this year and it was time to dig out the Best Fresh Tomato Recipes to use up our windfall.
We’d eaten loads of BLTs, added them to our salads, and made delectable tomato tarts. But more tomato recipes were needed!
Best Fresh Tomato Recipes
Finally, for the first time in a couple of decades, we were able to grow our own tomatoes. Our backyard has expanded and we have a sunny spot that’s perfect for an herb garden and a couple of tomato plants.
As is typical, they all ripened at once! It was time to dig out all my favorite tomato recipes and start chopping! Plus, I peeled and deseeded a bunch for the freezer. My pasta sauce will be kicked up a notch this winter!
Questions About Fresh Tomatoes
Tomatoes do best stored stem side down, in one layer, at room temperature. They will continue to ripen until refrigerated. If your tomatoes are super ripe, they can be stored for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. Bring chilled tomatoes to room temperature before serving.
With a sharp knife, cut a superficial X through the skin on the end opposite the stem. Blanch the the tomatoes in boiling water for about a minute then remove to a bowl of ice water. The peel will slip right off.
Next, place the whole tomatoes into a freezer-safe Ziploc bag or cut the tomatoes in half and remove the seeds first. Remove any excess air from the bag, write the date on the exterior, and place in the freezer.
Properly stored, they’ll be good for 2-3 months
Best Tomato Salads, Entrees, and Side Dish Recipes
These juicy red gems add a deliciousness to so many dishes. Here are a few of our favorites:
Bonus No-Recipe Needed Caprese Salad
I had my first Caprese Salad in Italy fresh out of college. The beautiful, flavorful tomatoes and fresh mozzarella with a bit of fresh basil became an instant favorite.
To make, arrange slices of both tomato and fresh mozzarella slices (try buffalo mozzarella!) on a plate or platter, sprinkle with a little kosher salt, and freshly ground pepper if desired. Then drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar (reduce the vinegar for a syrupy consistency). Easy as can be!
Childhood Favorite Stuffed Tomato Recipe
My mom would make these stuffed tomatoes in the summer with our ripe garden tomatoes. Dreaming about these from summer to summer, my mom had no clue what recipe she used.
I tried making these with mayo. With sour cream. Then, with mayo AND sour cream. Nope; every single attempt was a failure. When in charge of was in a PTO cookbook (surprised?) at the kids’ parochial school, I tasted a cold rice salad that had a dressing that tasted very familiar. Yup, it was the perfect combination: mayo and yogurt.
The rest of the recipe was a snap. I hollowed out tomatoes, chopped the reserved flesh along with some cucumber. Mixed in some diced celery, a bit of seasoning salt, and twice as much mayo as yogurt. That’s it; simple and refreshing.
- 3 ripe, medium tomatoes (homegrown preferred)
- 1/2 English cucumber, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 stick celery, diced
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise, I prefer Hellmann's
- Seasoning salt to taste
Cut the tops off the tomatoes, remove the flesh and seeds from inside, and reserved. Drain upside down on paper towels.
Chop the reseved tomato insides. Add to a bowl with the cucumber and celery. Add the yogurt and mayonnaise and mix to combine. Taste and season as desired.
Fill the tomato shells with salad mixuture. Chill before serving.
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Serving Size:1 tomatoe
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 323Total Fat: 32gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 26gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 417mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 3g
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This recipe was first shared in August 2011. New photos, text and recipe links added in 2020.