I've been traveling a lot in the last three weeks so fancy cooking or really any cooking has been kept to a minimum. Since I have no travel planned until April there will be some cooking going on at the Dog's Life household.
JR and I love tomatoes. Green or red, cooked or raw, makes no difference to us. It's all good. We eat them cooked, raw, stuffed with salads and eaten raw or stuffed with other stuff and cooked, sliced topped with parmesan cheese and broiled as a side dish, or chopped to top on ANYTHING! So when we go to the farmer's market or Coscto or the grocery store we buy tomatoes by the dozen. When I do this I try to buy them a little under ripe knowing that they will ripen on the counter very quickly in our weather.
As many of you know, tomatoes trucked up from god knows where never taste as good as ones grown in a small garden with rich composted soil but I've found that if I buy them a little under-ripe and cook them they develop a flavor profile that JR and I like.
Friends, please never put you tomatoes in the refrigerator. It stops the
ripening process and they just won't have any flavor at all. If your
tomatoes are getting over-ripe on the counter then eat them pronto.
That's what I needed to do with my last batch.
So, like most of my cooking this recipe was born of the necessity of breakfast, the need to use up the tomatoes on my counter and the fact that I was exhausted from traveling.
Eggs baked in tomato cups
2 firm tomatoes
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 tablespoons basil pesto
Parmesan cheese, optional
salt and pepper
Preheat broiler. Prepare baking dishes by smearing a little olive oil around bottom and sides.
Cut tomatoes in half across the middle. Remove the stem from one of the halves. With a small paring knife cut out the seeds and membranes of each tomato half, leaving the meat around the outside, to make a cup. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Smear a scant teaspoon of pesto around the inside of the tomato cup. Place in the prepared baking dish. Broil for about 5 minutes or until the a fork goes smoothly through the tomato.
Take tomatoes out of the oven. Take a spoon and push the tomato from the middle to the sides to extenuate the cup. You'll want to do this so the egg yolk doesn't want to slide off the tomato. Sure, a little of the white will but you want the yolk to sit inside the tomato, all pretty like. Break one egg into each cup. Sprinkle with a tiny bit of parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs if you want. Place back under the broiler for about 3 to 4 minutes or until the whites are set. I prefer my yolk runny so I usually bake for the shorter time.
Top with remaining pesto and let them set for a minute or two. They are HOT, HOT, HOT! But, so yummy. And easy, so very very easy.They would make a great meatless breakfast, lunch or dinner.
PS: tomorrow is JR and my 30th wedding anniversary. Not sure what we'll be doing but I do know that JR deserves a prize for putting up with me.