When I think of heirloom tomatoes, I think of one particular summer when I worked at the farmer’s market for a local farm. At the end of each day, I’d get to take home all the leftover produce that couldn’t be salvaged. We’re talking armfuls of arugula, heaps of fresh herbs, and the sweetest snap peas. Oh, and Nature God’s gift to earth: heirloom tomatoes.
One week we had an overflow of heirlooms at the farm stand. So I took my cardboard box, pushed aside some corn I was going to make a salad with, and loaded it with as many tomatoes as I could. I must’ve had over 12 ripe, juicy heirlooms of all shapes and sizes.
When I got home, my sister and I brainstormed what we could do with them. “I mean, tomato sauce?” I asked. She shrugged, acquiescing; we couldn’t think of anything better.
We cut every last tomato into pieces, then tossed them into a giant pot with a white onion and left it to simmer. At first, it was really watery. Did we mess up?
But then, slowly, it began transforming into a thick, creamy sauce. In 2 hours, the volume decreased by a factor of 4.
Which meant the flavor was out of this world. It tasted like we added a cup of cream. And, like, magic dust.
I can’t even describe it well. It. was. just. incredible. I should seriously blog it.
But for today, we have another incredible heirloom tomato dish. Specifically: Heirloom Tomato Carpaccio. As in, thin slices of juicy heirlooms topped with fresh corn, pistachios, creamy burrata cheese, balsamic glaze, and a healthy drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.