Debbie Dance Uhrig
This week I was obviously thinking ‘comfort foods’, because this simple tomato dish brings me a since of well-being. Not everyone can prepare a good side of breaded tomatoes, mostly because they’ve never heard of it before. I remember a couple of times during canning season my mother, Betty, would whip this up for my dad. When a few stewed tomatoes were left over from canning she would bread them. Little did she know that on down the road it would become one of my favorite dishes.
Also if you have a few tomatoes with soft spots and you hate to throw them out use a few for this dish. The only difference would be they won’t be as high in sodium as commercial canned foods, which is good! I would suggest that if you’re using fresh tomatoes deseed them as much as possible and remove the skins. I usually use a pint of home canned as you can see from this recipe, but 2 cups of stewed fresh tomatoes will work. Or, you can purchase them from the store.
The bread used in this dish is usually ‘cheap’ white bread. I know that whole wheat is good for us, but this is one dish I just won’t change out. For me it’s a bit like a BLT, or a grilled cheese sandwich, you just must have white bread.
I have implemented parmesan cheese. There’s lots of reason to consider a modification here. Parmesan ranks at the top when the sodium content is reviewed. So, perhaps Havarti or smoked Gouda might be a good substitute. If you are not into more specialty cheeses try a white cheddar cheese or plain yellow cheddar if absolutely necessary. When I was a youngster mother never put cheese in her breaded tomatoes. This is something to enhance the dish just a bit more.
If you feel that the heavy cream is just too much, feel free to pull back to milk. BUT if you want to make a good impression use the cream, use the cream, use the cream!!!
What do you serve breaded tomatoes with? Usually as a side to a roast, pork dish, or chicken. If you like bread puddings and breaded pineapple, you’ll love the tomatoes. As always the more I talk about a recipe the more my palate begins to desire the dish. This coming week it certainly will appear in one of my family’s meals.
Enjoy the week friends, I hope you can make time to try this simple dish. Don’t skimp on the bread or the recipe will be too runny.
Simply yours, The Covered Dish. www.thecovereddish.com
2-3 tablespoons salted butter
1 small onion, diced fine
1 pint or (15.5 oz.) can of chopped tomatoes, undrained
1/2 cup salsa, (I use homemade.)
6-8 slices while bread, dried and broken into pieces
1/4 – 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 cup heavy cream
Salt and Pepper to taste-
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 1 1/2 quart baking dish with vegetable spray or consider using a deep dish pie pan. Sauté the onions in the butter until tender. In a mixing bowl place all ingredients; leaving the cream until last. Pour mix into greased pan and bake until the dish is firm and set. It should be slightly brown on top and a bit puffy. The time could vary from 40 minutes to close to an hour for baking, depending upon your oven.
Options: Consider a different cheese for less sodium and calorie content. Add garlic, chopped celery, green peppers or basil. Half and Half or milk could be used instead of heavy cream.