It has been a long time since I did a post with a new recipe. I'm excited to share this one with you guys.
I saw some yummy looking tomatoes on my news feed over on Facebook and thought that would be something I'd like to try. I checked it out and read the recipe. Then I forgot about it for a couple days. Of course, I have no idea who posted it and there's no way I'm going to find it again. So I looked up baked tomatoes on Google. I never did find the recipe I saw on Facebook but I did find several others. Some called for balsamic vinegar and some for olive oil.
I've never done anything with balsamic vinegar so I decided I'd try it out. I didn't follow any specific recipe and just threw these tomatoes together with what I remembered from the various recipes.
The first picture is of the tomatoes before I put them in the oven. The second picture is of the finished tomatoes. The third picture is of the meal we had the tomatoes with.
Sliced Tomatoes - I wouldn't recommend slicing them too thin. I think 1/4 inch or thicker would be best for this recipe but I think you could simply cut a tomato in half for this recipe if you wanted to. I used Roma tomatoes because they were the cheapest at the grocery store.
Balsamic vinegar - This was my first try of balsamic vinegar and I just grabbed a bottle. I truly had no idea what the difference was between the different bottles on the shelf and I even did a little research and am still in the dark. Maybe I'll figure it out someday. (One of the recipes required marinating the tomatoes in the balsamic vinegar for about four hours - I didn't do this.)
Minced garlic - I have a big container of minced garlic in my fridge. I use it for a lot of things. I'm certain you can use fresh garlic and mince it yourself. The flavor might be better, but I'm lazy so I really like my big container of minced garlic.
Shredded cheese - I think you could use any kind of cheese depending on your taste. Most of the recipes I read called for parmesan. I chose a mix of shredded cheeses. It was called Italian six cheese blend. It had mozzarella, provolone, asiago, parmesan, fontina and romano cheese.
Bread crumbs - I bought a container of bread crumbs, but you can make your own and use those. They are good for a lot of different things.
Salt & Pepper - You could use your favorite seasoning salt instead of just salt and pepper.
This is how I made mine, but I think part of the joy of cooking is figuring things out for yourself and just winging it. It's really fun when you wing it and it still tastes good. Don't be afraid to do things your own way.
Put the tomato slices on a cookie sheet lined with tin foil. Drizzle balsamic vinegar over the tomatoes. (The next time I make these I'm going to try olive oil in place of the vinegar just to see what kind of difference it makes.) I put a small amount of minced garlic on each slice and then sprinkled a small amount of bread crumbs over them along with the salt and pepper. Then I put the shredded cheese on top of each slice and then another thin layer of bread crumbs because I couldn't remember if the crumbs went on top or not. I put the pan of slices in the oven set on 400 degrees and baked them for about fifteen minutes. Keep a good eye on your tomatoes after you hit the ten minute mark - all ovens cook a bit differently. Then I put the stove on broil for about a minute and a half to brown the tops. Always keep a good eye on things in the oven when on broil. I rarely make a batch of garlic toast under the broiler that isn't burned. It could be just me... I freely admit I'm still learning to cook.