It's the end of October and I have yet to pull my tomato plants from the ground. Occasionally, I will still pick a handful of red cherry tomatoes from the vines -- unheard of at this time of year! What I have an abundance of, however, is green tomatoes -- beautiful, big, green tomatoes.
If you are in need of a recipe to use up any green tomatoes you might still have, try this one for Green Tomato and Onion Gratin. I ate this one night as a main course. It would be great served alongside a beef or pork roast.
:: adapted from a recipe by Claire Robinson::
• 1/4 pound bacon, cut into 1/4-inch wide pieces
• 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
• 2 large Vidalia onions, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds
• 4 large green tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 6 ounces sharp white cheddar, grated (I used Gruyére)
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
2. Render bacon in a large skillet over medium heat. Transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs with 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat removed from the skillet.
3. Add the onion rounds to the remaining bacon fat in the skillet in batches and cook, without breaking the round slices apart, until there is some golden color, about 5 to 6 minutes per side.
4. To assemble the gratin: Overlap the tomato slices in one row in a large baking dish. Next, make a slightly overlapping layer of the partially cooked onion slices, keeping them intact. Repeat the layers until all of the tomatoes and onions have been used. Season lightly with salt and heavily with black pepper. Sprinkle the cooked bacon over the top of the tomato-onion layers, and follow that with the grated cheese and bread crumbs.
5. Bake on the middle shelf of the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes. If browning too quickly, cover the gratin with foil.
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