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Random Acts of Deliciousness

Recipes and other delicious discoveries, served randomly.

Tomato-Palooza!

Lynley Jones

Bring a taste of summer to school with you.

The last fresh tomatoes are at their best right now.  And you can use them to make great back-to-school sandwiches.  It's like a little piece of summer coming with you to school each day to help you remember all your summer fun.

Summer sun in every bite.

Montclair Farmer's Market, September 2014

Montclair Farmer's Market, September 2014

They come in many sizes and colors, they look great and they taste even better.  See if you can find some really interesting tomatoes at the grocery store.  Have a taste-test:  can you taste the difference among types of tomatoes?

Make Your Own!

Here's how to make your own Tomato-Palooza sandwich (just like the picture):

Tomato-palooza sandwiches

Toast two slices of bread, then brush each toasted slice with olive oil. (Toasting the bread helps so it won't get soggy before lunchtime).

Slice fresh mozzarella cheese into thin rounds and lay them onto one toasted bread slice. 

Slice tomatoes into rounds and use your fingers to remove the juicy, pulpy seeds.  (Again, this helps so it won't get soggy before lunch.  If you are eating your sandwich right away, leave the juicy seeds in - it helps add flavor!)

Lay the sliced tomatoes on top of the mozzarella cheese.  Sprinkle them lightly with sea salt (also called "fleur de sel" - it's milder than regular table salt) if you have it.  If not, you can very lightly sprinkle them with table salt.  (Salt is a flavor enhancer - just the right amount brings out flavor and helps things taste more like themselves.)  If you don't use too much, this will help your tomatoes pop with lots of juicy tomato flavor.

Lay lots of basil leaves on top of the tomatoes.

Add more thin-sliced fresh mozzarella on top, and top with the other toasted bread slice.  Cut your sandwich in two (makes it easier to eat) and slip it into your lunchbox.  At lunchtime, your happy tomato sandwich will be there for you, reminding you of all your summer fun.

Here are some other ideas:

  • Bacon, lettuce and tomatoes (with mayonnaise on the bread) - that makes it a B.L.T.!

  • Avocado slices, bacon, baby spinach leaves and tomatoes

  • Roast beef, Monterrey Jack cheese, arugula and tomatoes

Other ideas? 

Post a comment to let us know how you are using tomatoes in your back-to-school lunches!