Summer's abundance really allows for dishes full of flavor to be thrown together almost effortlessly. Often, flavors of the summer don't even require much cooking at all----just a hint of this or that to round things out a bit.
This recipe is an example. Its only requirement is the need for really great tomatoes. You know the ones: Plump, juicy, rich in color... possibly the ones you've been eyeing out on the vine. I admit that I have many ways that I love to eat summer tomatoes; sliced with a sprinkling of salt being probably number one on my long list. Another is a good old fashioned tomato sandwich on white bread with regular mayonnaise and a bit of celery salt. Yum!
But this recipe is yet another option. I like to serve it along with garlic buttered pasta.
Summer Tomato Gratin
2-3 Large summer tomatoes
A handful of basil leaves, chopped
3 T. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/4 C. coarse ground bread crumbs from a crusty white bread
1/3 C. fresh ground Parmesan
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Butter a 9-inch gratin dish or other shallow baking dish.
Arrange tomato slices, slightly overlapping, in the dish. Season with salt & pepper and sprinkle with the basil.
Heat oil in a small skillet and saute garlic for about a minute. Add the bread crumbs and the cheese and toss around in the oil & garlic. Sprinkle this mixture over the tomatoes. Grate a bit more parmesan on top and sprinkle with salt & fresh ground pepper.
Roast tomatoes until the crumbs are golden but tomatoes retain their shape----only about 15 minutes.