At his seminar in Aspen, French cooking authority Jacques Pépin had a lot to say about boiling the world's most perfect eggs. While doing so, he also managed to make six stunning tomato dishes, using a number of in-season varieties, including a stacked Greek tomato salad, tomato-laced spaghetti with anchovies, and a tomato-bread gratin.
I just so happened to return from the neighborhood farmers market bearing a loaf of fresh-baked bread and vine-ripened cherry tomatoes, so I combined those with Parmesan to make Jacques's gratin. The simplistic French country dish highlights the seasonality of sweet cherry tomatoes, so don't skimp on quality ingredients, and be sure to buy local tomatoes. Get your hands on the recipe, which requires only five minutes of prep, after the break.
- 1-1/4 pounds (3-1/2 cups) cherry tomatoes
- 3 ounces (3-1/2 cups) day-old bread, preferably from a baguette, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 6 cloves (2 tablespoons) garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons good-quality olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Wash the tomatoes and remove and discard any stems.
- Put the tomatoes in a bowl and mix in the remainder of the ingredients. Transfer the mixture to a 6-cup gratin dish.
- Bake for 40 minutes and serve.
Makes 6 servings.
- Other, Side Dishes