Here in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, our gardens are beginning to come in. All winter long you wish for a good tomato or some fresh green beans. The only downside is that when the garden is ready to pick, the vegetables seem to multiply rapidly over night!
There are just my husband and myself, and two people can only eat so many tomatoes, cucumbers, eggplant, zucchini and peppers. I find myself giving vegetables to neighbors and anyone else who comes by — such as the pest control man and the UPS delivery person.
Trying to come up with different ways to cook these veggies can also be a challenge. Below is a delicious tomato pie recipe I hope you’ll enjoy.
Cheese Crust Tomato Pie Preparation: 1 hr Bake time: 45 min.
This recipe serves 6. [ha ha – How about 3? If there are more than 3 people eating, better make two!]
1 9-inch frozen pie shell or roll out a pre-made pie crust (You bakers are welcome to make a homemade crust, but you won’t find the recipe here.)
1 large yellow onion, chopped You can add a shallot as well.
4 large fresh tomatoes Enough to overfill the pie crust. And you can use a variety.
¼ cup Fresh Basil Leaves (chopped) about 2 doz. large leaves
1 ½ cup grated sharp white cheddar about 6 oz.
1 ½ cup grated Swiss cheese about 6 oz
¾ cup mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon Texas Pete or Crystal or your favorite hot sauce
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Butter
Salt & Pepper Flour and/or Wondra
Directions: Chop fresh tomatoes into ½-inch chunks and place between paper towels to drain them. The biggest problem with this recipe is too much water from the tomatoes. Or use frozen diced fresh tomatoes – drain in a colandar as they thaw, then squeeze between paper towels.
- Preheat oven to 350. Place frozen pie shell in the oven until lightly browned (around 15 to 20 minutes). Poke some holes in the bottom and sides of the crust.
- While the pie crust is baking, caramelize onions. Add olive oil, butter & onions to a sauté pan and cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until onions turn brown and translucent.
- Combine Swiss, cheddar, mayonnaise, Texas Pete and salt & pepper in a bowl. Mix together well. The end result should be a heart attack inducing ball of calories.
- Place tomatoes in a bowl. Toss in some flour and/or Wondra and stir until tomato chunks are coated. Mix the basil in with the tomatotes.
- By this time your onions & pie crust should be finished sautéing & baking.
Layer the caramelized onions in the bottom, then tomatoes and basil, of the pre- baked pie crust.. It’s best if the tomatoes are piled a little bit high in the center.
- Top with the mayonnaise cheese crust. You have to sort of spoon the crust on top. Use of fingers is important. Mold it over the tomatoes to the inner edge of the crust.
- Place the pie pan on a cookie sheet with a sheet of foil under it to catch the melting cheese that drips off the pie. (This makes a delicious crusty snack for the cook later.)
- Bake for 45 minutes or until the cheese top is lightly golden and bubbly. Wait a few minutes for the pie to set up a bit before cutting into it.