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Walnut Creek Magazine

What's In Season: The time is ripe for tomatoes

These versatile vegetables—botanically classified as fruits—burst with flavor sautéed garlic and topped with poached egg, tossed in salads, baked into savory galettes or puréed into a refreshing gazpacho or pasta sauce. Can, dry, or freeze them. Check with local farmers for the best variety to use in a particular dish. 


By Walnut Creek Farmers’ Market

1 ½ cups flour
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, cold
5 T ice water
1 egg beaten and a 1 tsp water for egg wash
3 ounces goat cheese
3 T unsalted butter
1 cup sweet corn, about 2 ears
Sea salt and pepper
3 big or 4 small heirloom tomatoes 
Fresh thyme
Olive oil

In a large bowl combine flour and salt. Cut in cold butter. Add ice water and mix until it comes together. Turn dough onto a floured surface, knead, then form into a round flat disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for one hour. Meanwhile, "roast" corn on a hot cast iron skillet by drizzling a little olive oil on the shucked corn, and turning in the hot pan until char marks form on the kernels.  Remove from pan and slice off cob.

Flour a work surface and roll dough to 1/8-inch thick. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread goat cheese over dough leaving a 2-3” border.  Sprinkle roasted corn, then top with tomato slices. Drizzle with olive oil, pepper, sea salt, and thyme. Fold edges inward then brush dough with egg wash. Bake at 350 until golden; 30-40 minutes.


By Diablo Valley Farmers’ Market

2 medium Heirloom tomatoes
Handful of cherry tomatoes
1 nectarine, pitted and cut into wedges
1 yellow peach, pitted and cut into wedges
A few slivers red onion
3 mint or basil leaves 
1½ tsp sherry vinegar
2 T goat cheese 
Freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp extra virgin olive oil

DIRECTIONS: Gently toss tomatoes, nectarine, peach, onion and mint in a bowl. Drizzle vinegar and olive oil on top, then toss gently. Arrange on salad plates. Sprinkle with goat cheese and black pepper. Drizzle a little olive oil on top.



6 slices day-old French bread, crusts removed
4 lbs. vine-ripe medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 cucumber, coarsely chopped
2 each red or yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped
½ medium onion, coarsely chopped
1/8 cup garlic cloves, chopped
4 cups tomato juice  
2 T sugar
2 T paprika
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup sherry wine vinegar
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ handfuls fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
1 lemon, juiced

Soak bread in ½ cup of water for 5 minutes, then squeeze out excess water. Place bread in a blender or food processor; add tomatoes, cucumbers, bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Puree ingredients until almost smooth, leaving a little texture. Pour vegetable mixture into a large bowl; stir in tomato juice, sugar, paprika, salt, pepper, vinegar, oil, parsley, and lemon juice. Refrigerate soup for at least 2 hours until well chilled; flavors will develop as it sits. Season gazpacho again with salt and pepper before serving. Serve in chilled bowls and top with cucumbers, bell peppers, onions, hard boil eggs, or lemon wedges.

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