By now home gardeners are enjoying the results of their labors including the tomatoes that are so plentiful this time of year.
Those of us who don’t grow our own plants have been heading for our favorite farm or farm market for tomatoes that have outstanding flavor thanks the combination of rain and sunshine.
Sweet corn and tomatoes make the best dinnertime combination; some folks can make dinner out of those alone. Or you can grill burgers and skewer the tomatoes with onions and peppers for a grilled side dish.
Salads are an obvious choice for tomatoes, whether you use them in a traditional chef’s salad or make a tomato-based salad. They also brighten up sandwiches, can be made into a simple tomato sauce, be stuffed and baked, or roasted to use as a pizza topping. You even can sweeten them and make old-fashioned tomato jam.
We have been eating tomatoes for hundreds of years, although there was a time when they were shunned, first by Europeans and later by Americans because of their membership in the nightshade family.
But this highly nutritious fruit eventually was embraced and we have been enjoying it in many different ways ever since. The season is now at its height, which makes it the best time for freezing and canning. The season continues until frost.
A galette is a fancy name for a rustic tart. This recipe from thekitchn.com takes advantage of the local tomatoes now at area farms and farm markets.
Tomato and Feta Galette
1 unbaked pie crust (about 10 ounces), thawed if frozen
6 ounces feta cheese (1½ cups), crumbled
1 medium shallot, diced
4 sprigs of fresh thyme, plus 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, divided
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 medium tomatoes (about 1 pound total), sliced ¼-inch thick
1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Place the pie crust on a lightly floured work surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 12-inch round that’s about 1/8-inch thick. It’s okay if the dough isn’t perfectly round.
3. Starting on one end of the dough, loosely roll up the pie crust around the rolling pin. Transfer it to the prepared baking sheet and unroll the dough back out flat.
4. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the dough, leaving a 2-inch border. Sprinkle with the shallot, thyme leaves, basil, salt, and pepper. Arrange the tomatoes over the cheese and herbs.
5. Gently fold the edges of the dough over the tomatoes, covering about 2 inches of the filling and pleating the dough every 2 inches as you go. Top with the thyme sprigs.
6. Bake until the crust is golden-brown and the tomatoes are soft, about 40 to 45 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes more. Serve warm or at room temperature.