by Anne Higgins
Suddenly it is August again, so hot,
I sit on the ground
in the garden of Carmel,
picking ripe cherry tomatoes
and eating them.
They are so ripe that the skin is split,
so warm and sweet
from the attentions of the sun,
the juice bursts in my mouth,
an ecstatic taste,
and I feel that I am in the mouth of summer,
sloshing in the saliva of August.
Hummingbirds halo me there,
in the great green silence,
and my own bursting heart
splits me with life.
Cook's Notes:Recipe adapted from Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa)
I found this recipe to be the essence of late summer harvest with vine ripened tomatoes and fresh herbs. I did find 1-1/2 TB. herbes de provence an excellent substitution for fresh if not available or panko crumbs for fresh bread crumbs. Bread crumbs were made by cutting off crusts of either whole wheat or white bread and pulsed in food processor.
- 6 ripe tomatoes
- 1-1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs (about 5 slices) or use Panko crumbs
- 1/4-1/3 cup minced scallions, white and green parts
- 2 TB. minced flat leaf parsley
- 2 tsp. minced garlic (2 cloves)
- 1 tsp. minced fresh thyme leaves
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Olive oil, good quality
- Fresh basil
- Optional: using 1/1/2 TB herbes de Provence instead of fresh herbs
- Preheat oven to 400
- Cut core from tomatoes, removing as little as possible. Cut them in half crosswise and remove seeds and juice.
- Turn tomatoes upside down on a paper towel to get all of the juices out.
- Place tomatoes in greased baking dish right side up drizzle with some olive oil salt and pepper.
- In food processor, add bread to make crumbs, add in scallions, garlic and spices or use panko crumbs for this step.
- Pulse a few times to blend.
- Fill the cavities of the tomatoes with bread mixture, add fresh basil and drizzle with a little more olive oil.
- Bake 15 minutes. Sprinkle with Gruyere cheese and Parmesan cheese and bake for 2-3 minutes until cheese is melted.