Plum Tomatoes with Pesto Crumbs

Serves 4 as a side dish

400g Plum tomatoes
1 tbsp Olove oil
For the Pesto Crumbs:
15g basil leaves
15g pine nuts
15g freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp Olive oil
25g wholemeal breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Cut the tomatoes in half, arrange cut side up in a shallow baking tray and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

To make the pesto crumbs, put the basil, pine nuts, Parmesan and oil into a bowl of a food processor or blender and blend to a paste. Add the breadcrumbs and whiz for another minute or so until the breadcrumbs are coated with the pesto mixture.

Scatter the crumbs over the tomatoes and drizzle over the teaspoon of olive oil, Return to the oven for another 20-30 minutes. The longer the tomatoes are cooked the intense the flavour.


Oven Roasted Tomatoes with Feta

Serves 2-3

350-400g tomatoes, cut in half
4 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 ½ tsp sea salt flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
250g good quality Greek feta cheese

Preheat the oven to 240C/475F/Gas mark 9.

Oil a shallow roasting tin with 2 tbsp of the oil. Place the tomatoes cut side up in the tin. Sprinkle over the thyme and some salt and pepper and roast for 15 minutes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 150c/300f/Gas mark 2 and roast for a further 1½ hours until they have shrivelled to about half their original size and concentrated in flavour. Leave to cool.

Serve the tomatoes with crumbled feta and drizzle over the remaining olive oil


Roasted Tomato and Fennel Salad serves 3-4

For the Salad base:
1 (or 2 small) fennel bulb, finely sliced
3 Tomatoes, cut into wedges
1 x 15ml spoons olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
30g pitted black olives, cut in quarters
200g penne, cooked as instructions

For the Honey dressing:
1 x 15ml spoons balsamic vinegar
3 x 15ml spoons garlic olive oil
10g fresh dill, finely chopped

Preheat the oven to 220C,400F, Gas mark 6.

For the salad base: Place the fennel and tomatoes on a baking tray and brush with olive oil, season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes or until softened, combine with the olives and pasta and put to one side.

For the dressing: In a screw top jar add the vinegar and garlic olive oil and give it a good shake. Mix the dressing with the pasta mixture and then sprinkle with dill. Serve immediately.


Spaghetti with Garlic Baked Tomatoes - Serves 4

3-5 (medium sized) ripe but firm tomatoes, halved
3 Garlic cloves, crushed
24 Basil leaves, torn (or a bunch of rocket)
4 tbsp Olive Oil, plus extra for sprinkling
400g dried spaghetti
50g small black olives, pitted and finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Freshly shaved Parmesan cheese, to serve

Put the tomatoes into an ovenproof dish cut side up. Sprinkle with the garlic, 8 of the basil leaves, olive oil and salt and pepper and roast in a preheated oven at 230c/450f/Gas 8 for about 8 minutes or until the tomatoes are just tender (be careful not to overcook, they need to keep there shape). Transfer to a plate together with their cooking oil and juices and keep them warm. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, add the spaghetti and cook until al dente – tender but still firm to the bite. Drain, reserve 1 tbsp of the pasta water. Return the spaghetti to the pan and add the reserved 1tbsp of water. Add the chopped olives, the remaining basil and the hot oil and juices from the tomatoes. Season with salt and plenty of pepper and toss well.

Serve the spaghetti in heated bowls with the tomatoes and Parmesan shavings on top.


Tomato and Basil Tart

Serves 4

150g Mozarella, thinly sliced
3-4 tomatoes, sliced
About 10 basil leaves
2 tbsp Olive Oil
2 Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Pastry:
115g plain flour
A pinch of salt
50g butter or margarine
1 egg yolk

To prepare the pastry, mix together the flour and salt and rub in the butter and egg yolk. Use cold water to make a smooth dough, knead lightly on a floured surface and then wrap in cling film and chill for about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 190c/375f/Gas 5. Remove the pastry from the fridge and leave for 10 mins. Roll out into a 20cm/8” round and press in the base of a flan dish or tin. Prick all over with a fork and bake in the oven for 10 minutes until firm but not brown. Allow to cool slightly. Reduce the oven temperature to 180c/350f/Gas 4. Arrange the mozzarella slices over the pastry base. On top, arrange a single layer of sliced tomatoes, overlapping them slightly. Dip the basil leaves in olive oil and arrange onto of the tomatoes. Scatter the garlic on top, drizzle with the remaining olive oil, season and bake for 40-45 minutes, serve hot.


Baked Tomatoes with Mozzarella, Olives and Basil.

450g tomatoes
25g black olives, pitted and chopped
125g mozzarella
2 x 15ml olive oil
20g fresh basil, leaves only
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5

Halve the tomatoes and place on a baking tray. Drizzle with 15ml spoon of the olive oil and bake for 15 minutes until softened.

Remove from the oven and sprinkle over ½ of the olives and ½ of the basil leaves and season to taste. Slice the mozzarella and arrange the slices over the top of the tomatoes. Top with the remaining olives and basil leaves, drizzle over the remaining olive oil and season to taste.

Return to the oven for 12-15 minutes, until the cheese melts and the tomatoes are tender. Delicious served hot or cold.


Braised Fennel with Tomatoes

Serves 4 as a side dish

30-45ml/2-3tbsp olive oil
one small onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
4 Tomatoes, peeled and chopped
about 175ml/6fl oz dry white wine
15ml/1tbsp chopped fresh basil or 2.5ml/11/2 tsp dried
40-50g/11/2-2oz fresh white breadcrumbs
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/gas 2. Trim the fennel bulbs (if they have feathery tops) and cut into slices 1cm/1/2” thick.

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and fry the onions and garlic for about 4-5 mins over a moderate heat until the onions are slightly softened. Add the tomatoes, stir-fry briefly then stir in 150ml/1/4 pint of the white wine, the basil and the seasoning. Bring to the boil, add the fennel, then cover and cook for 5 mins.

Arrange the just the fennel in layers in an ovenproof dish. Pour over the tomato mixture and sprinkle the top with half the breadcrumbs. Bake in the oven for about an hour. From time to time press down on the breadcrumb crust with the back of a wooden spoon and sprinkle over another layer of breadcrumbs and a little more of the wine. The crust slowly becomes golden brown and very crunchy.


Tomato, Basil and Goats Cheese Tart

400-500g ripe tomatoes
150g soft goats’ cheese
4 level teaspoons shredded fresh basil (or thyme if you prefer), plus a few leaves
1 x 375g pack fresh, ready rolled puff pastry.
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to gas mark 5, 375f or 190C.

Unwrap the pasty and place on a baking tray, using a sharp knife score a line all way around 1 cms from the edge, but be careful not to cut all the way through.

Put the goats cheese into a small bowl, add the crushed garlic and basil and season well, give it all a good mixing, then using a palette or round edged knife carefully spread the cheese mixture evenly all over the pastry, right up to the line.

Next thinly slice the tomatoes and arrange them on top of the goats’ cheese in overlapping lines lengthways. Season and drizzle with olive oil and scatter the basil leaves all over.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 55 minutes until golden brown and the tomatoes are slightly charred. If you are serving the tart warm then leave to settle for about 10 minutes.


Tomato Salad with a Goats Cheese and Basil dressing

Serves 2

For the Salad:
4 large Tomatoes, thinly sliced
4 Slices of Ciabatta bread, cubed
2tbsp olive oil

For the dressing:
110g/4oz Goats Cheese
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
½ lemon, juice only
salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a medium frying pan heat the oil for the salad, fry the bread cubes until crisp and golden. Remove the croutons with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

In a medium bowl whisk together the dressing ingredients.

Divide the tomato slices between two serving plates. Scatter over the croutons. Drizzle over the dressing and serve.


Carrot, Tomato and Ginger Pasta Salad

Serves 4

340g farfelle pasta
500g carrots
2cm piece root ginger
4 spring onions
3-4 tomatoes
4 tbsp olive oil
1tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Cook the pasta, rinse under cold water and add a little olive oil to prevent it sticking.
Wash and grate the carrots. Peel the ginger and grate. Finely slice the spring onions and tomatoes. Mix these vegetables together.
Combine the oil, lemon juice and vinegar in a screw topped jar and shake. Pour over the vegetables and mix with the pasta.


Cheesy Baked Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

Serves 2-3 as a side dish

3-4 Tomatoes, halved
75g crumbled Roquefort cheese (you could also use Feta or Stilton)
3 tbsp fresh breadcrumbs
20g pine kernels
1 tbsp Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 190c, Gas mark 5.

Place the tomatoes cut side up in a shallow oiled baking dish. Scatter the crumbled cheese over the tomatoes.
Mix together the fresh breadcrumbs with the pine kernels and olive oil. Sprinkle the mixture over the tomatoes.
Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes.


Cherry Tomato and Cheese Muffins

275g Plain flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 Organic eggs
225ml milk
100g butter, melted
15-20 Cherry tomatoes, quartered and seeds removed
100g Cheddar Cheese, grated

Preheat the oven to 200c/Gas mark 6. Place muffin cases into a 12 hole muffin tray.
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl.
In a separate bowl whisk the eggs with the milk and melted butter. Stir in the quartered tomatoes and cheese.
Sift the flour mixture straight into the tomato mixture and using a large wooden spoon carefully fold the flour into the mixture until combined. The mixture will remain abit lumpy, but don’t worry, it is important not to over stir it.
Spoon into the muffin cases, filling just to the op. place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until risen and golden brown.
Place cooked muffins on a wire rack and serve when cool.


Cherry Tomato, Garlic and Rosemary Pizzas

Serves 6

1 500g pack mixed grain bread mix
325ml warm water
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
Rosemary leaves, chopped
Cherry Tomatoes
50g Parmesan cheese, grated

Make up the bread mix following the pack instructions. Roll into 6 flattened rounds and leave in a warm place for approximately 30 minutes, they should have doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 230c/450f/Gas Mark 8.


Pasta with Tomatoes and Feta

Serves 2 as a main course

250g Small pasta,such as penne or twists
1 tbsp olive oil
1 handful of pine nuts
1 pinch salt
1 garlic clove, finely sliced
1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves,chopped
1 ½ tbsp red wine vinegar
300g tomatoes, cut into wedges
100g feta, crumbled

Cook the pasta as per instructions, whilst pasta is cooking, heat a frying pan over a medium heat and dry fry the pine nuts and salt until the pine nuts are golden. In a large bowl whisk together the garlic, parsley,vinegar,oil and salt and pepper. Next add the pine nuts, tomatoes, feta and freshly cooked and drained pasta, then toss to combine and serve.


Plum Tomato and Mustard Seed Tart

250g Baby Plum Tomatoes
30g butter
10g soft light brown sugar
1 good squeeze of lemon juice
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 handful of fresh basil leaves

For the crust:
100g self raising flour
1 pinch of dry mustard powder
A pinch of cayenne pepper
15g freshly grated parmesan
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2-3 tbsp milk for mixing

Grease a 7” flan tin with some of the butter, put the rest of the butter in a bowl and mix with the sugar, lemon juice, mustard seeds and season with salt and pepper. Spread this mixture over the base of the tin.

Cut the tomatoes in half, arrange them cut side down on top of the butter to completely cover the base of the tin. Scatter shredded basil leaves on top.

Heat the oven to 220c/425f/Gas mark 7. Sift the flour, mustard and cayenne pepper into a mixing bowl. Season and stir in the mustard seeds, parmesan and olive oil. Mix together with a knife and rub in with the fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Bind to a soft but firm dough with the milk.

Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead gently until smooth. Roll to a circle about ¼” thick to fit the top of the tin. Lay it on top of the tomatoes and press down lightly, tucking the edge in around the tomatoes.

Bake for 15 minutes on the top shelf until the crust is crisp and golden. Loosen the edge with a knife and turn the tart upside down on a serving plate. Decorate with extra basil leaves and serve straight away.


Stuffed Baked Tomatoes

Serves 2

4 tomatoes
8 black olives, pitted
A handful of stale breadcrumbs
75g Gruyere cheese, grated
1 thyme sprig
1 tbsp black olive tapenade
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
Extra virgin olive oil, freshly ground salt and black pepper

Preheat the oven to 220c/Gas 7.Cut the tomatoes in half horizontally. Using a teaspoon scoop out the seeds and core.Place the tomato halves cut side up on a roasting tray. Put a pitted olive into each half, season with salt and pepper. Mix the breadcrumbs with half the grated Gruyere, stuff the mixture into the tomatoes. Strip the thyme leaves form the stalk and mix with the olive tapenade and mustard, brush over the tomatoes. Sprinkle the rest of the grated cheese over the top then drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes. Serve warm with hunks of fresh bread.

Watercress, Potato and Tomato Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing.

Serves 4

45g Gorgonzola or other blue cheese, rind removed
60g mayonnaise
30g yoghurt
1 Lemon, juice only
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bag watercress, washed
500g new potatoes, cooked and sliced
250g tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 tbsp chives, chopped

To make the dressing, mash the cheese up then gradually work in the mayonnaise and then the yoghurt. Stir in the lemon juice and season.
In a salad bowl, make a bed of watercress and scatter over the potatoes, scatter the tomatoes over the potatoes. Spoon the dressing over the top and sprinkle with chives. Toss at the table just before serving.

Green Beans with Tomatoes and Garlic

Serves 2

200g Green beans, topped and tailed
100g tomatoes, quartered
2 Garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp Olive oil
75ml white wine
½ a lemon, zest and juice
Small handful of flat leaf parsley,chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas 6. In a baking dish, mix the beans, tomatoes, garlic and olive oil. Add half of the wine, the lemon zest and juice and season well. Cover the dish with foil and place in the hot oven
After 10 minutes, remove, stir well and add the rest of the wine. This time leave the foil off and cook for a further 10 minutes at the same temperature, then remove and add the parsley. The tomatoes will have cooked down leaving the beans coated with oily, cooked down tomatoes.
Serve immediately.


Warm Borlotti Bean Salad

350g fresh borlotti beans
1 small onion, chopped
1 few sprigs of parsley and/or coriander, finely chopped
2 large tomatoes (or 10-12 cherry toms), skinned, deseeded and chopped
1 good tbsp olive oil

Simmer the beans in lightly salted water for 15 minutes or until completely tender. Combine the onion with the herbs, tomatoes and olive oil. As soon as the beans are cooked, drain well, then toss with the rest of the ingredients while still warm. Serve warm.