Coming into the light


This months Food and Wine magazine was dedicated to Spain. My son Andrew and his girlfriend Phelan are off to Barcelona tomorrow for a wedding. Barcelona is my favorite city in the world (so far). The people are “muy simpatico”, so I thought I would make some Spanish dishes, that were tomato based and vegetarian.

Cherry Gazpacho

2 lbs. ripe tomatoes, cored and chopped

1/2 lb. sweet cherries, pitted

1 small Italian pepper or Cubanelle pepper, stemmed seeded and chopped

1 1/2 cups day old cubed crust less rustic white bread

1/3 cup chopped red onion

1/4 cup sherry vinegar

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt and pepper

1 cup packed basil leaves

slivered anchovy fillets (I didn’t use these)

chopped  pistachios, and grated frozen goat cheese for garnish.


In a large bowl, toss the tomatoes with cherries, Italian pepper, bread, red onion, vinegar, garlic, 1/2 cup olive oil and a very generous pinch of salt and pepper. Let gazpacho base stand at room temperature for 2 hours

In batches, puree the gazpacho base until very smooth, about 2 minutes.Transfer to a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan of boiling water, blanch the basil until tender, about 1 minute. Drain well and cool under running water. Squeeze out excess moisture and transfer to blender. With machine on, gradually add the remaining 1/3 cup of olive oil until the mixture is a bright green and very smooth. Strain through a fine sieve into a small bowl, then season the basil oil with salt.

Season the gazpacho with salt, adding tablespoons of water if too thick. To serve, spoon soup into bowls and garnish with slivered anchovies fillets, chopped pistachios and grated goat cheese.THIS WAS SO DELICIOUS

                                   Seared Fennel and Tomatoes with a Mustard Vinaigrette

2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard

2 Tbsp red wine vinegar

1/2 cup plus 6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and pepper

4 large Roma tomatoes (1 lb.) halved lengthwise

3 fennel bulbs trimmed and sliced through the core, small fronds reserved for garnish

Tarragon leaves for garnish


In a small bowl, whisk the mustard with vinegar. While whisking constantly, drizzle in half cup of olive oil until emulsified.

Heat a griddle or a cast iron skillet. Brush the tomatoes and fennel with olive oil and salt and pepper.

 Working in batches cook the tomatoes cut side down until lightly charred, about 3 minutes. Transfer to platter charred side up. Working in batches cook the fennel turning once until lightly charred about 6 minutes. Transfer to platter with tomatoes.

Drizzle the vegetables with the vinaigrette and garnish with the reserved fennel fronds and tarragon.

Serve warm or at room temperature.Beautiful and yummy

Tomato-Lemon Tart

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Roll out 1 thawed sheet of frozen puffed pastry. ( 1 14 oz package or 1/2 of 17.3 oz package.) on a sheet of lightly floured parchment paper to a large rectangle , measuring 15 by 10.

Prick the pastry in several places with a for, leaving a 1″ border around the edges, then slide parchment paper onto a rimmed baking sheet.

Combine 1 finely grated garlic clove and 1 Tbsp olive oil in small bowl and brush pastry with garlic oil, staying within border.

Thinly slice 1 lemon into rounds 9 a mandoline works great) and remove seeds. Arrange lemons in a single layer over pastry. And yes there are mermaids on Fire Island

Scatter torn basil leaves over top. Slice 1 lb. ripe tomatoes ( about 3 medium) 1/4″ thick pat dry with paper towels.

Arrange ( a little overlap is OK) Sprinkle with lots of flaky sea salt. and a few grinds of pepper.

Drizzle with 1 Tbsp of olive oil . Bake tart until golden brown, puffed and crisped. 30-35 minutes. Let tart cool 10 minutes.

Cut into 8 pieces and drizzle with more olive oil. Serve with dollop of Creme Fraiche 0r sour cream.

I am taking these out to Fire Island this weekend as well as the Cherry Gazpacho

2 comments on “Coming into the light

  1. Another masterwork! Yum!


  2. Diane Efantes Farrell says:

    I’m lovin’ that tomato Lemon Tart imagining the flavors. Also glad the mermaids still inhabit the island. Sending hugs and love.


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