Late Summer Tomato Pie

Hey y'all! I hope you're enjoying your Labor Day Weekend so far. I know I am. I hope you've got big plans for yourselves. And I hope they involve giving this Tomato Pie a try. Now, I know today is technically National Cheese Pizza Day, and this is kind of a pizza... though it isn't super cheesy. But humor me. You won't even miss it.

What makes this recipe so spectacular is the quality and simplicity of the few ingredients. If you're anything like me, you have an abundance of tomatoes at this time of year - or if not, they are super easy to find at the market. For this, I use heirloom tomatoes in a bunch of different sizes, some seedless tomato sauce, dried oregano, fresh basil, and garlic. And of course, pizza dough. Check out this oh so simple recipe below:

Use a 1 lb ball of pizza dough (which most grocery stores carry these days) or you can make it from scratch. There's a ton of great pizza dough recipes out there, but you can give my homegirl Laura Vitale's recipe a try here if you've got some time and wanna make your own. Let it sit on a floured surface at room temp about 30 minutes until its nice and pliable while preheating your oven to 450 degrees. Once its easy to work with, stretch it out a bit and place it into a well seasoned cast iron pan. Pop it in the oven while it finishes preheating (maybe 5 minutes) to let the crust soften a bit more, and take it out.

Top with a generous spread of seedless tomato sauce, arrange slices of tomatoes, and thinly sliced garlic, a hearty pinch of oregano, drizzle of olive oil and bake it in the oven about 20-25 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. You know what pizza is supposed to look like. When it comes out of the oven, top with some freshly chopped basil, and freshly shredded parmesan (the good stuff). Oh my Gwyneth is this ever good.

Give this a try. It's so easy. You won't regret it. Be sure to comment if you give it a try, and let me know how much you loved it. And I know you will. x

Thirsty Thursday: Rosé Sangria Slushes

Take a moment to just read that headline again. Go ahead, I'll wait. Yes, you did read that right. Rosé. Sangria. Slushes. They're real. And they're delicious. They are just begging for you to make them for your long holiday weekend. Share them at your picnic. Take them to the beach. Enjoy them in your kitchen at 11am while writing a blog post. What? Scratch that last.

Anyway. Not only are these delicious, they are painfully simple, and dare I say, fun (?) to make. All you need is a bottle of inexpensive rosé (need a suggestion? - check my previous post HERE for some great picks under $15!) some orange liqueur, and a baking dish. Follow along, now:

Simply pour your bottle of rosé into a glass baking dish (one that you would bake say, a casserole in). Add 1/4 cup of orange liqueur, 2 cups of plain ol' H2O... and depending on the sweetness of your rosé, between 1/4 and 1/2 cup of sugar. You can also add a squeeze of lime or orange juice in there if you are so inclined. Give everything a good whisk for a few minutes, or until the sugar dissolves. Place the entire concoction in to the freezer - and here comes the hardest part - wait about 8 hours or so. 

Once the time has passed, take a fork and use it to "shave" the slush mixture into flaky, fluffy, delicious, boozy ice. (Because of the alcohol content, it wont freeze solid like an ice cube, but rather the perfect "soft ice" texture. Is that a real term? It is now. I made it up.) Serve in paper cones for a festive flair, or in glasses if you want to class it up. Of course, be sure to pair with your favorite late-summer fruits - a good place to start is with anything that matches the flavors in your rosé. Mine said it had notes of citrus and red berries, hence, orange, lime and strawberry.

Really do give this a try. I can't think of a tastier, boozier, funner (there I go making up words again) way to have a summer sendoff! Let me know how you like it in the comments below, and if you have any new twists on classic sangria - I'd love to try 'em. Good luck, and happy almost weekend, y'all!

Thirsty Thursday: Summer Fruit Shrub

Yes, you read that right. And no, it's not actually a shrub. If you haven't heard, Shrub Cocktails are the new thing. Or, so I've read in Bon Appetit. Naturally, if it's something I haven't tried before, I knew I needed to set out and make it for myself.  

Shrub, at its essence, is simply fruit-infused simple syrup with vinegar. This potent combination makes a perfect addition to bright summer cocktails, or even drank non-alcoholic, mixed into some seltzer. Find the super-simple recipe below:

To make your shrub, mix 3/4 of a cup of sugar with a 1/2 cup of water and bring to a boil. Then, add about a pound of cut fruit of your choice (today I'm using peaches) and simmer for about 15 minutes. Strain into a container and chill.

To make your shrub cocktail, add 2 oz of your shrub, 1 1/2 oz of vodka, and ice into a shaker. When frosty, strain over ice, and top with seltzer. Absolutely delicious. Perfect for these remaining hot summer days. Tell me you'll try this. Really. Go ahead. I'll wait.