So I’ve been staring at southern tomato pie recipes for the last few years and haven’t taken the plunge because, well, they aren’t exactly healthy. And that is an understatement. Yes – you do use fresh tomatoes but that’s where the good stuff ends. Because it also calls for lots of cheese, a cup of mayonnaise and usually a bottom and top crust. On the recommendation of my dear friend, Karen, I decided to give this one a try. After all – this recipe doesn’t call for a top crust. Which I consider one step closer to ‘diet food’:)
Seriously, the reason to make this is simply because it is absolutely fantastic. Heck, better than that! Something about the combination of tomatoes, green onions and basil really works, as does the cheese/mayo topping. The latter forms an absolutely beautiful crust.
The recipe calls for peeled tomatoes which is kinda a pain. It involves slicing an “X” at the top of each tomato and quickly blanching it in boiling water. Then the skin comes off rather easily by peeling away from the “X”. What this achieves is not having the skins come apart as you eat the pie.
Southern Tomato Pie (adapted from pauladean.com)
Serves 6 to 8
- 4 large tomatoes, peeled* and sliced 1/4″ thick
- 10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
- 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
- 1 pre-baked 9″ deep dish pie crust
- 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Place the tomatoes in a colander in the sink in one layer.
- Sprinkle with salt and allow to drain for 10 minutes. (If you don’t the pie could fall apart…too much liquid)
- Layer the tomato slices, basil and green onions in the pie shell.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Combine the grated cheeses and mayonnaise together.
- Spread mixture on top of the tomatoes and bake for 30 minutes until lightly browned.
- To serve: cut into slices and serve warm. Enjoy!
* To peel tomatoes you’ll need to blanch them. First set a medium sauce pan filled with water on high heat and bring to a boil. Fill a medium bowl with water and ice cubes. With a paring knife, make an “X” on the bottom of the tomato (not the stem end) without cutting deeply. When the water boils place the tomatoes in the boiling water and submerge them for 20 seconds. Remove them and put them immediately in the bowl with ice water for 10 to 20 seconds. Then, starting at the “X”, peel the skin away from the tomato – it should come off easily.