by Diana Pittet
Spring is the season of hope and promises, when the earth, held for too long in the fallow grip of winter, finally reawakens. In the glow of pleasantly warm sunshine, green shoots come forth from the ground and trees, and farms are alive with the birth of animals. It’s also the season when heavy comfort foods lose their appeal and meals become lighter and fresher, just like springtime days themselves.
What’s to come in this blog are two recipes that combine eggs and tomatoes. At the start, it should be said that the tomato probably isn’t the first vegetable that comes to mind when one thinks of spring. Leeks, asparagus, ramps, new potatoes, and baby artichokes are more like it. Two things about that: 1) tomatoes are always delightfully in season thanks to Village Farms and their innovative growing techniques and 2) spring is also the time for fresh thinking, so rethink tomatoes! They’re delicious at this hopeful time of year, adding brightness, both in color and taste, to your meals.
The first recipe, colorful Maverick Mix® Tomato and Egg Bake, couldn’t be simpler, requiring just one dish for preparation and cooking. This might be just what you need if you’ve exhausted yourself after hosting and feeding family and friends for the holiday, or you’ve spent hours in the garden getting it ready for summer. For this dish, I chose Maverick Mix® because the assortment reminds me of the brilliant colors of dyed eggs in an Easter basket. Baking the tomatoes at high heat preserves their various colors and shapes, and tossing in fresh herbs balances their sweetness and pumps up the vibrancy. So easy to make, this could become your go-to dish for any day of the week, any season.
The other recipe, Sinfully Sweet Campari® Tomato, Asparagus, and Leek Strata, is a bit more involved, but it too offers convenience. Since it can be assembled hours in advance–preferably so–you can make it the day or night before and then serve it at brunch. This means there’s no need to wake up extra early to prepare it. Just pop it in the oven. To highlight the springtime nature of the strata–basically a savory bread pudding–I’ve included asparagus and leeks along with the Sinfully Sweet Campari® tomatoes whose sweet-tartness help cut through the richness of eggs, milk and cheese. Come summer you can still make a strata; keep the tomatoes and swap out the other veggies for zucchini. In the fall, try roasted butternut squash; and in the depths of winter, kale.
Special thanks to Diana Pittet who serves as Vice Chair, NYWCA Renewing Members, Co-Founder of the Night Owl Hospitality & AP Whisky Club, and a Writer, Consultant & Tour Guide for Food & DrinkPrint