Nothing in the world compares to a ripe summer tomato. Taut skin gleaming in the dappled midday sunshine, it beckons with a ruby red blush. Firm, meaty, and substantial, it needs only a pinch of salt to erupt with savory flavor, naturally sweet, acidic, and subtly peppery. If you’re really lucky, it will still be warm, straight from the garden, the green aroma of its twisted vines still lingering like fading perfume.
For a fruit that’s been around for over 80,000 years, you’d think the novelty would have worn off by now, but humans and animals like simply can’t get enough. At least, I know that’s true for me, especially if we’re talking about heirloom varieties. The more gnarled, colorful, and bulbous, the better. Those beauties never see the heat of the kitchen, too perfect to bear cooking. For the rest, however, I have more than a few winning recipes to make the most of the season.
Maximize your own fresh tomato intake with a few of my favorite recipes:
10 Best Fresh Tomato Recipes For Summer
Ripe summer tomatoes are a fleeting summer treat. Make the most this season with the very best fresh tomato recipes around.
Slow roasted cherry tomatoes explode with rich, sweet, umami flavor across the landscape of chilled carnaroli rice. Artichokes blend beautifully with the subtly nutty, grassy olive oil coating every luscious bite. Infused with fresh herbs and zesty lemon peel, it's bright, vibrant, complex, luxurious, and yet still approachable and comforting all at once.
Strawberries and tomatoes, though seemingly an odd couple, bring out the best in each other for both sweet and savory preparations. Just as comfortable together in a salad as in this free-form pie, the savory, gently acidic bite of the tomatoes serves to accentuate the sweetness of the berries.
A true flash in the pan, the edible gems are seared until their skins bubble and burst to create a sauce of their own juices. Zucchini noodles are tossed into the hot mixture, just to soften, but not cook, retaining a more toothsome bite and fresh flavor.
Inspired by noodles infused with beets, spinach, and tomatoes, the same fresh ingredients join the party in this colorful mix. Yes, that’s why it’s the BeST pasta salad, but for more than that cute pun alone. Accented with an invigorating punch of fresh basil, savory yet subtle white miso, and a light kiss of buttery avocado oil, it might very well be best dish of the season.
Brightened up with additional herbs and garlic, subtle seasonings make a world of difference in banishing blandness, all while still allowing the tomato to take center stage. It’s the kind of recipe that’s so simple that only the best ingredients will do, because you taste each and every one of them.
Quinoa mingles with black beans, roasted red peppers, and beets to create a smoky, spicy, and brilliantly ruby red filling for juicy fresh tomatoes. Melted vegan cheese tops everything off with a rich, gooey finish. You could very happily enjoy just the quinoa as a stand-alone side dish too.