Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Summer Side Dish

Tomato and Goat Cheese Crumble

The first sun-ripened tomatoes of summer are eagerly anticipated by impatient tomato enthusiasts. Conversely, by the end of summer, these same enthusiasts are petitioning friends and neighbors to take the excess of their abundant crop! The Cooking School staff enjoyed using a generous variety of beautifully colored tomatoes for this gratin-style side dish called Tomato and Goat Cheese Crumble. Not only did we enjoy this as a side dish, we looked at the leftovers and decided that they would be delicious as a "sauce" for pasta. It's always fun to be a little creative and experiment in the kitchen. You'll find our bonus recipe at the end of the post. If you haven't joined us for a cooking class, consider Savor Summer's Best on August 5 for a menu highlighting the best of summer produce available at Jungle Jim's International Market.


Aren't those tomatoes pretty? The multi-colored grape tomatoes are from NatureFresh Farms and the large tomatoes are a combination of vine-ripened and heirloom varieties. You can use any tomatoes you have available.


Cut the tomatoes into bite-sized chunks, leaving the cherry tomatoes whole. 


Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet; add the tomatoes and cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and most of the tomato liquid has evaporated. 


Spoon half of the tomatoes into prepared baking dish and crumble half the goat cheese on top. Repeat layers. Chef's Note:  After making this dish, we wished we would have used an herbed goat cheese for that extra punch of flavor. 



Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium skillet and add the breadcrumbs.


Cook, stirring occasionally until crumbs are golden and crispy.



Remove from heat and stir in pine nuts and half of the Parmesan cheese. 


Scatter mixture over the tomato and cheese layers.


Then sprinkle with remaining cheese.



Bake 25-30 minutes until golden and bubbly.


Below you'll find the leftover tomato crumble used as the sauce for pasta. If you aren't a fan of leftovers, try telling yourself this is a completely different dish - revamped to serve with your favorite pasta!


Tomato and Goat Cheese Crumble

2¼ pounds assorted ripe tomatoes, including a pint of cherry or grape tomatoes
2 teaspoons olive oil
8 ounces fresh goat cheese, preferably with herbs
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
1/3 cup lightly toasted pine nuts
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat oven to 375°. Grease an 8x8-inch baking dish.

Cut tomatoes into bite-sized chunks, leaving cherry tomatoes whole. Heat olive oil in a 12-inch skillet, add the tomatoes and cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and most of tomato liquid has evaporated.

Spoon half of the tomatoes into prepared baking dish and crumble half the goat cheese on top. Repeat layers.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a medium skillet, add breadcrumbs and cook, stirring occasionally until crumbs are golden and crispy. Remove from heat and stir in pine nuts and half of the Parmesan cheese. Scatter mixture over tomatoes, then sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 25-30 minutes until golden and bubbly.

Serves 4



Make pasta with leftovers:

Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Save 1-2 cups pasta water before draining pasta. Return drained pasta to pan, add warmed Tomato and Goat Cheese Crumble and a large handful of grated or shredded Parmesan cheese and a couple teaspoons of fresh, chopped herbs to pan. Stir, adding pasta water as needed to make a smooth and creamy sauce. Serve sprinkled with additional Parmesan cheese.

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