Summer has hit the rest of the country like a ton of bricks, but here in the Northwest our tomatoes have hardly ripened due to late rains and cloudy days. Craving that uncanny summer tomato taste, I broke down and bought some Romas — to bring out real flavor, I got down to roasting. This summer recipe couldn't be any easier or more delightful. Read on for the details . . .
Roma tomatoes are not my favorite, nowhere near the top of my list of tomato varieties, but our heirloom and cherry tomatoes just haven't shown up in the markets or in my garden quite yet. Romas do wonderfully when roasted however, and they perked up this dinner. Simply adorned with olive oil and balsamic, a touch of fresh herbs, they scream summer any time of year really.
What's nice about the tomato, mustard and ricotta combination is the lovely balance of spicy, creamy and tangy. The play of each taste is divine and would make a great party appetizer, cut into smaller pieces or the dish is a superb solo dinner or lunch. Served with a fried egg, it could be your next favorite breakfast. Any time of day, anywhere you are, just make this scrumptious open-facer. You won't be sorry you did!
3 Roma tomatoes
2 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 slices grainy toast, or 2 larger pieces of toast
3 tablespoons ricotta cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
fresh basil and chives for garnish, sliced thin
Preheat oven to 450°. Slice tomatoes into halts or quarters, depending on size. I sliced mine into quarters, having larger-sized Roma tomatoes. In a medium-sized bowl, toss tomatoes lightly in oil, vinegar, salt and pepper and one of the garlic cloves. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for about 25 minutes.
Toast the bread well, spread a scant 1/2 teaspoon mustard onto each piece. Then spread 1 tablespoon of ricotta on top of mustard-toast. Squish as many roasted tomato slices onto the toasts, garnish with fresh basil and chives. Season with salt and pepper.