Tomatoes, Tomatoes, Tomatoes!

Reporter Kelli Hanson is in the incredible garden of Susan Ritts, the creator of Putting on the Ritts catering and cookbook author.  Thanks to the hot summer weather, tomatoes are going crazy.  Susan has ideas for using them.

FRESH CORN AND TOMATO SALAD
Serves 4

6 ears of sweet corn – or one package frozen corn
4 Roma tomatoes, cut into bite size pieces, seeds removed
1 large red onion, chopped
1/4 to 1/2 cup butter, cut into 4-5 pieces
Salt & pepper, 1 tablespoon each
1 avocado, cut into bite size pieces (optional)
1 LB large shrimp (optional)

If using fresh corn, husk corn and discard husk and silk. Using a sharp knife, balance ear upright on a cutting board and cut corn off each ear. Put cut corn and onion into a large non-stick frying pan and add butter. Heat pan to medium-high heat, stirring constantly until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper and stir to thoroughly combine. Add tomatoes and mix well. Cook another 2-3 minutes, mixing as you cook. Remove from heat.

If using shrimp – Coat peeled and deveined shrimp with CGD Seasoned Olive Oil. Marinade for CGD for 20-30 minutes. Heat a large, non-stick frying pan to high heat. Pour marinaded shrimp with CGD marinade in pan and lower to medium-high heat. Saute for 1-2 minutes. Flip shrip over and cook for another minute or so. Remove from heat and top corn/tomatoes with seared shrimp.

And here are 2 of my EASY & TASTY recipes from my upcoming book – Four Seasons of Food, Flowers and Fun!

TOMATO CROSTATA
Serves 8

DOUGH

1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 TB sugar
1/3 cup ice cold water

FILLING

2 large heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced (I like to use yellow and red heirlooms)
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup grated Asiago cheese
3 slivered basil leaves, or more to taste
CGD Original Oil
1 tsp, garlic salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
1 beaten egg

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Put a piece of parchment on a cookie sheet and set aside. Put flour, butter & sugar in a food processor and pulse just even to combine. Slowly add water while pulsing until dough forms a ball. Remove and wrap in plastic. Put in the refrigerator for an hour and up to 3 days.

Thinly slice the heirloom tomatoes and place in a colander and sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Roll out dough to about a 12 inch round on a floured service. Transfer to cookie sheet. Brush dough with CGD to within 2 inches of edges. Sprinkle with 1/2 asiago cheese.  Arrange heirloom tomato slices in a circular pattern over CGD and remaining cheese. Scatter cherry tomatoes over heirlooms.

Fold dough over tomatoes, pleating as you go leaving center exposed. Brush tomatoes with CGD. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Scatter sliced basil over cheese and sprinkle with garlic salt and pepper.

Brush dough edges with beaten egg. Bake for about 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.,Remove from heat, cool slightly and enjoy!! NOTE – this is wonderful hot, room temp or cold.

TOMATO, BLUE CHEESE SALAD
Serves 4

2 cans Cannellini white beans, drained and rinsed
4 plum tomatoes or 2 larger tomatoes, chopped
1 small red onion, chopped (optional)
1 small wedge blue cheese
1 steak, cooked to preference and cut into strips (optional)
CGD Seasoned Oil – or your favorite oil/vinegar mixture

Combine beans, tomatoes, onion in a medium bowl. Add CGD to taste. Mix well. Crumble blue cheese and add to bean mixture (about 1/2 cup). Serve with steak (if using) and enjoy!

WHITE BEAN SALAD
Serves 4

2 cans Cannellini beans, drained
1/2 red onion, chopped
3 plum tomatoes, chopped
1/3 cup chopped Italian parsley (optional)
CGD Seasoned Olive Oil or Olive oil & Salad vinegar
Salt & pepper
Fresh Tuna Steak (optional)

Combine beans, chopped onion, parsley and tomato and mix well. Salt and pepper the bean mixture. Pour olive oil over beans, using approximately 1/3 cup. Add salad vinegar – about 12 “shakes” and mix. Taste to determine if the salad needs additional oil, vinegar or salt & pepper. This tastes great right away, but even better if it has an hour or so for flavors to blend. Add grilled French bread and you have a meal

If using tuna, heat CGD oil in non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. For rare steak – when hot, add tuna steak and cook for about 2 minutes. (Cook longer if medium or well-done tuna is desired). Flip and cook another minute or two. Remove from heat, cool a few minutes and cut into strips. Add to tomato bean salad.

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