Your tastiest raw tomato dishes

Salads and pastas, yes, but let us introduce you to perhaps the greatest tomato sandwich ever

Topics: Kitchen Challenge, Food,

Your tastiest raw tomato dishes

Every week, your challenge is to create an eye-opening dish within our capricious themes and parameters. Blog your submission on Open Salon by Monday 10 a.m. EST — with photos and your story behind the dish — and we’ll republish the winners on Salon on Tuesday. (It takes only 30 seconds to start a blog.) Please note that by participating, you’re giving Salon permission to re-post your entry if it’s chosen as a winner, and acknowledging that all words and images in your post are your own, unless explicitly stated. And yes, mashed potato sculpture counts as a dish. Emphatically.

This week, we asked for your most lively raw-ish tomato dish.


Tomato-rubbed Mediterranean Tuna Sandwich by Linda Shiue: This week, Linda tells us a lovely story of the importance of befriending even intimidating neighbors, both because it’s the right thing to do, and because they might give you their homegrown tomatoes and tell you how to make this awe-inspiring Maltese specialty of tomato-rubbed toast topped with all manner of good things — tuna, hard-boiled eggs, olives, herbs, onion and olive oil.


In the Plain, but not Plain-Old category:

The complexities of a simple tomato salad by Gavin Fritton: There may be seemingly nothing to making tomato salad, but when you’re in the hands of a man passionate about tomatoes, you’ll find all kinds of techniques to find enlightenment. Not a recipe per se, but an intense walk-through of everything you need to know from how to peel tomatoes to the importance of salt.

In the Tomato-Cucumber Salad category:

Farmer’s Tomato Cucumber Salad With Creamy Dressing by Grace Hwang: Inspired by a rather odd afternoon in a potato farmer’s home, Grace keeps one eye on the Mediterranean for this salad and one eye on Idaho, blending yogurt and mayonnaise with vinegar and dill for an intriguing dressing.

In the Pasta category:

Spaghetti With Fresh Tomato and Fontina Cheese by Lucy Mercer: There is definitely a school of thought that says, “When the tomatoes are good, just let them be,” and this pasta is a testament to that: cut, left to marinate with garlic, basil and creamy cheese, it becomes its own sauce for pasta without any cooking at all.


Tomato Bread (aka Bruschetta, if you must be fancy) by Coogansbluf: Not to denigrate this classic snack, but Coogs is laying it down this week for anyone who’s ever not made it because its Italian name makes it sound difficult. It’s tomato bread, and it’s as simple as that. (Especially if you know the trick he shares with using a grater to quickly peel and chop them.)

Summer pesto with tomatoes by Felisa Rogers: As simple and classic a dish as can be, Felisa’s pasta with fresh pesto tossed with ripe tomatoes is irresistible … as in, we’re taking a break to make some now.

Pizza by At Home Pilgrim: In a detailed and illustrated post (too many photos, in fact, to re-post comfortably in Salon!), the At Home Pilgrim teaches us how to make pizza from the ground up. 

Tahini-stuffed tomatoes by Fusun Atalay: The Mediterranean sesame paste called tahini is usually used as a condiment, but here, Fusun mixes it with lemon juice to form a rich stuffing for cherry tomatoes.

Variations on a tomato sandwich theme by Lori Covington: In the matter of the ‘mater sandwich, are you a butter, mayonnaise or cheese kind of person? Any way is OK; we won’t judge.

Grilled Tomato Relish for Steak by Lisa Kuebler: If you’ve got the grill going for a steak anyway, why not let a little char take care of the sauce for you? Here, Lisa shows us how to simply grill a bit of tomato and onion for flavor, mix it up into a tart relish, and use it to enliven meat.

Tomato salad with goat cheese, almonds and blueberries by Sheba Marx: If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be traumatized by a raw tomato, Sheba’s Catholic school child-self is happy to tell you. Psychic healing all finished, though, here’s also a lovely, simple tomato salad.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .


Thanks so much for all of your gently handled tomato recipes last week! But of course, the glories of the fruit aren’t only to be found when raw. And come later in the summer, when the crop is heavy and they’re all around, it’ll be time to think about what you’re going to do with pounds and pounds of the stuff, and there will be no avoiding a hot kitchen. Thoughts will turn to cooked sauces and stews. Some for canning, some for freezing, and some for serving with a wink that says, “Yes, it’s 150 degrees out, and yes, I just stood over a stove for hours to make this for you.”

So this week, as promised and/or threatened, please: your finest slow-cooked tomato sauces, stews or whatever you come up with, as long as the tomato gets nice and concentrated.

Be sure to tag your posts: SKC cooked tomato (Please note that by participating, you’re giving Salon permission to re-post your entry if it’s chosen as a winner, and acknowledging that all words and images in your post are your own, unless explicitly stated. Adaptations of existing recipes are fine, but please let us know where the original comes from. And if you’d like to participate but not have your post considered for republication on Salon, please note it in the post itself. Thanks!)

Scoring and winning

Scores will be very scientific, given for appealing photos, interesting stories behind your submissions, creativity, execution and tomatoliciousness. 

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 10
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie

    A contemporary romantic comedy set to Elvis Costello and lots of luxurious and sinful sugary treats.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Welcome to Temptation" by Jennifer Crusie

    Another of Crusie's romantic comedies, this one in the shadow of an ostentatiously phallic water tower.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "A Gentleman Undone" by Cecilia Grant

    A Regency romance with beautifully broken people and some seriously steamy sex.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Black Silk" by Judith Ivory

    A beautifully written, exquisitely slow-building Regency; the plot is centered on a box with some very curious images, as Edward Gorey might say.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "For My Lady's Heart" by Laura Kinsale

    A medieval romance, the period piece functions much like a dystopia, with the courageous lady and noble knight struggling to find happiness despite the authoritarian society.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Sweet Disorder" by Rose Lerner

    A Regency that uses the limitations on women of the time to good effect; the main character is poor and needs to sell her vote ... or rather her husband's vote. But to sell it, she needs to get a husband first ...   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Frenemy of the People" by Nora Olsen

    Clarissa is sitting at an awards banquet when she suddenly realizes she likes pictures of Kimye for both Kim and Kanye and she is totally bi. So she texts to all her friends, "I am totally bi!" Drama and romance ensue ... but not quite with who she expects. I got an advanced copy of this YA lesbian romance, and I’d urge folks to reserve a copy; it’s a delight.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "The Slightest Provocation" by Pam Rosenthal

    A separated couple works to reconcile against a background of political intrigue; sort of "His Gal Friday" as a spy novel set in the Regency.   Read the whole essay.

    Romance novels need a canon

    "Again" by Kathleen Gilles Seidel

    Set among workers on a period soap opera, it manages to be contemporary and historical both at the same time.   Read the whole essay.

  • Recent Slide Shows



Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>