Goat Cheese Pomodoro with Olive Tapenade on Focaccia and Arugula

So far, Barbara is batting 1,000 in our kitchen.  Here is another inspiration from STIR:

This dish was soooo amazing (like, bread soppin’, spoon lickin’ amazing) and literally took me only 30 minutes from the time I started, until it landed on the table.  AJ and I enjoyed this as our dinner last night but I would also serve this as an app for company or on a holiday buffet spread.  The recipe calls for everyday ingredients that, when prepared simply, result in an impressive WOW factor!  *I was actually going to wait until next summer when tomatoes are back in season before making this, but I eyed some beautiful greenhouse tomatoes yesterday that smelled like the vine so I thought, “Heck, let’s go!”

INGREDIENTS:

For the Goat Cheese Pomodoro~

6-8 medium tomatoes, peeled (if you find them attached to the vine, leave it- it’s cool looking)

8-10 oz cheese (I had about 8 oz of goat left over from a party- but use whatever mix you have kickin’ around ie this is a great use for left over nubs from a holiday cheese plate)

2 Tbs heavy cream (only if you are using hard cheese to loosen up the mix when you place it in the oven)

1 pinch each of sea salt, fresh cracked pepper and granulated sugar

1 Tbs good olive oil

For the Olive Tapenade~

1 cup olives (I used tasty, pitted kalamata olives from the antipasto bar at the grocery store)

1/4 cup olive oil

Focaccia or Ciabatta, sliced very thin

For the Arugula~

2 handfuls baby arugula

2 Tbs good olive oil

1 Tbs balsamic

Pinch Sea Salt, Cracked Pepper

PREPARATION:

  • Preheat oven to 325
  • Bring a medium pot of salted water to a bowl and prepare a bowl of ice water.  To peel the tomatoes, score an X on the bottom of each tomato with a pairing knife and place in the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove promptly with a strainer and plunge into the ice water bath. The tomato skin should pucker and slide off easily with a pairing knife.  Save the tomato skins! (You can fry them in olive oil and use them as garnish with a little sea salt- C’mon…it takes 2 minutes *tops* and they become impressive little chips!
  • Place peeled tomatoes on cookie sheet and sprinkle with sea salt, cracked pepper, a pinch of granulated sugar and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, crumble cheese in an 8″ gratin dish and set aside.
  • Place Olives and Oil in a Cuisine Art and puree for 1 minute or until smooth.  (What you don’t use tonight will keep well for over a month in the fridge in an air tight container covered with a thin layer of olive oil.)
  • Fry the tomato skins in a small pan with 2 Tbs olive oil and garnish with sea salt.  Let drain on a paper towel before serving. Save the left over oil.
  • Pull the tomatoes from the oven and gently lay them in the bed of cheese.  Drizzle with the left over olive oil from the tomato skins (about 1-2Tbs) and sprinkle with a little extra salt and pepper.  Place back in the oven for 10+ minutes.
  • Meanwhile, toast the thin slices of focaccia, spread with olive tapenade, garnish with fried tomato skins and plate.
  • Toss freshly washed and spun Arugula with olive oil and balsamic and plate- the fried tomato skin looks really pretty on the green arugula- can you tell that I really want you to experience fried tomato skins!
  • Pull the Goat Cheese Pomodora from the oven, plate and serve- make sure you include spoons!  The tomatoes cut smoothly with your spoon and the juice is amazing.  

Comments

  1. Anna this looks to die for! I am making this immediately! xoxo

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