In our house, we get super excited for tomato season – because tomato season means a whole host of summer favorites like my grandmother’s stuffed tomatoes and savory tomato cobbler.
Tomato cobbler is one of the first meals that I ever made for my husband. And at first, he was skeptical. “Tomatoes don’t belong in cobbler,” he protested, “berries do!” But he quickly changed his mind. And he will be the first to tell you, he was wrong.
So, why don’t I make this recipe year-round? Well, like many good dishes, tomato cobbler shines with simplicity by showing off a few distinct flavors. And, of course, tomatoes are the star. So, using fresh tomatoes is key. But flavor isn’t the only reason I plan my menu seasonally. There’s a whole host of benefits that comes with eating seasonally including reduced cost and lower environmental impact. And there are nutritional benefits to eating produce in season as well.
Eating Seasonally Can Maximize Nutrient Content
Fruits and veggies are notoriously high in vitamins. But vitamins can be sensitive and therefore, prone to damage. For example, vitamin C (which helps us absorb iron) is especially prone to damage caused by environmental elements like heat, light, water, and oxygen. And as produce travels further, it undergoes more exposure to these elements. So, choosing fruits and vegetables that are local can cut down on exposure to damaging elements and degradation of nutrients.
That’s not to say that fruits and veggies found in the grocery store have no nutrients left in them and aren’t worth eating. Sure, homegrown and farm-fresh produce may have a bit more – and those are great when you can get them! But even when picking up produce from the grocery store, buying in season likely means that your food isn’t travelling from great distances and therefore, retains higher amounts of nutrients. After all, stores don’t want to pay to ship produce if they don’t have to. And that means less cost for you too!
Not sure what’s in season? Check out your state’s seasonality chart!
…Now that you’re undoubtedly as excited about tomatoes as I am, you probably want some of that cobbler I mentioned. So, from our house to yours, I hope you enjoy. Happy tomato season!
- 3-4 large ripe tomatoes
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 TBSP white vinegar
- 2-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-2 TBSP chopped scallions
- 1 tsp herbs de province
- 1.5 tsp fresh minced basil
- 1 cup of cheddar cheese
- Preheat oven to 425 F
- Cut tomatoes into slices and salt lightly. Remove excess moisture by stacking them on top of each other on a plate with a couple of paper towels on the bottom of the plate and between each layer. Set to the side.
- Combine ingredients 2-7 in a small to medium bowl. Set to the side.
- Prepare a pie dish by greasing it with a small amount of olive oil or butter. Sprinkle cornmeal in the bottom, tapping the pan to spread evenly.
- Spread half of tomatoes in one layer to cover the bottom of the pie pan. Spoon mayo filling over the layer and top with cheese.
- Spread remaining tomatoes on top of the cheese and top this layer with biscuit dough**
- Bake until biscuits are lightly golden on top, about 15 minutes.
*You can use store bought dough for the biscuits. I like to make them using Chef John's Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe | Allrecipes
**You can sprinkle a bit of extra cheese on top of the second layer of
tomatoes before topping with biscuits - I do!
***This recipe is originally from Easy Recipes from Around
the World - A Communal Table. The author has taken it down, so I am resharing this gem that I make from memory with a few slight modifications to the original.
****Dietitian's Tip: Kick up the protein and iron
content by serving this dish with sauteed white beans and spinach. Adding a splash of lemon juice can kick up the vitamin C as well. And a dash of red pepper flakes on top of the beans gives it a nice pop of color that makes a beautiful meal!
Disclaimer: The information on this site is in no way intended to be a substitute for medical advice. It is intended for general informational purposes only. Always seek personalized medical advice and consult your practitioner with questions regarding your or your child’s health.