I brought in three plum tomatoes the other day, and we’ve eaten our first early girl. We had club sandwiches. I’ve eaten bowls full of cherry tomatoes.
The day I await, though, is the one on which I bring in enough to fill a Tomato Basil Pie.
More than 11 years after I wrote about it in Loaves & Dishes, it’s still my favorite tomato dish in the whole wide world. I want to share it with everyone — and no one.
When it’s fresh out of the oven, I lose all sense of decorum. It’s all I can do not to sink a fork into it right in the pan. Waiting for it to cool and set up, I feel like a kid on Christmas morning, bouncing my butt on the couch and whining until the buzzer goes off. I learned that from my son. Or vice versa. Oh, I don’t know.
Can I be done writing now and go home and make this?
TOMATO BASIL PIE
9-inch prepared pie crust, unbaked
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
5 plum or 4 medium tomatoes
1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
4 cloves garlic
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
Additional basil for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Unfold the pie crust, and place in a 9-inch quiche or pie plate. Flute the edges or press with fork tines. Pre-bake according to the package directions. Remove from oven and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Cool on a wire rack.
3. Cut tomatoes into wedges and drain on paper towels. Arrange the wedges on top of the melted cheese in the baked shell. In a food processor, combine the basil and garlic, processing until coarsely chopped. Sprinkle over the Tomatoes.
4. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the remaining mozzarella cheese, mayonnaise, Parmesan and pepper. Spoon cheese mixture over basil mixture, spreading to evenly cover the top.
5. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbly. Serve warm garnished with basil leaves.
Serves 4 to 8.
– “Three Rivers Renaissance Cookbook IV,