Red and gold harvest of tomatoes offers sweet, savory flavor

The end of summer means a bonanza of tomatoes. Common varieties include red and yellow cherry and grape tomatoes and juicy beefsteaks and plums (Roma). Check your farmers market for pretty and flavorful heirloom (nonhybrid) varieties.

Eaten raw, roasted, fried or broiled, tomatoes of all types pair well with simple flavors, like olive oil and salt, herbs like basil and cilantro, and fresh mild cheeses such as mozzarella and ricotta. Nothing beats a BLT or burger with sliced beefsteaks, and plums are great for soups or sauces. Freeze extra tomatoes for fresh flavor all year.

Everyday Food magazine offers quick, healthy solutions for everyday meals -- from the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living. For more recipes and additional tips, visit

Tomato-bread soup

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 large yellow onion, diced small (2 1/2 cups)

Coarse salt and ground pepper

2 garlic cloves, minced

Red-pepper flakes (optional)

3 pounds very ripe tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped

6 ounces day-old crusty bread, thick crusts removed, torn into 1-inch pieces (4 cups)

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, torn if large

1. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring often, until soft, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and pinch of red-pepper flakes (if using) and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes and cook, stirring often, until they begin to break down and release their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add 3 cups water and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then add bread and stir to combine.

2. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until bread is soft and soup thickens, about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. To serve, divide soup among serving bowls, drizzle with a little oil and top with basil leaves.

Nutritional information per serving: 218 calories, 11 grams fat (1 gram saturated fat), 27 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams protein, 4 grams fiber, 45 percent of calories from fat.

Baked eggs in tomatoes

Serves 4

4 large beefsteak tomatoes

Coarse salt and ground pepper

1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

4 large eggs

2 teaspoons snipped fresh chives

1/4 cup grated pecorino or Parmesan cheese (1/4 ounce)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9-inch baking dish or pie plate with parchment paper. With a serrated knife, cut off the top 1/2 inch from each tomato. With a spoon or a melon baller, gently remove seeds and inner membrane, being careful not to break through flesh of tomato. Place tomatoes in dish and season with salt and pepper.

2. Divide corn among tomatoes. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and chives and season with salt and pepper. Divide egg mixture among tomatoes and top with cheese. Bake until egg mixture is set, about 45 to 50 minutes. Serve warm.

Nutritional information per serving: 148 calories, 7 grams fat (3 grams saturated fat), 13 grams carbohydrates, 10 grams protein, 3 grams fiber, 43 percent of calories from fat.

Tomato and goat cheese tart

Serve this savory tart as a side dish or cut into little squares as an hors d'oeuvre. Experiment with other soft cheeses and herbs. We like feta and oregano or ricotta and basil.

All-purpose flour, for rolling

1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

1 tablespoon sour cream

1 teaspoon grainy mustard

Coarse salt and ground pepper

2 large leeks, white and light-green parts only

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

3/4 pound grape or cherry tomatoes, halved if large, or plum or beefsteak tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick, or a combination

2 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled

2 teaspoons fresh thyme or basil leaves

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out puff pastry to a 12-inch square; transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. In a small bowl, stir together sour cream and mustard and season with salt and pepper. Spread sour cream mixture evenly over pastry. Fold over 1/2-inch border on all sides and press edges to seal. Refrigerate 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, halve leeks lengthwise; rinse thoroughly, pat dry and slice 1/4 inch thick. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add leeks, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until leeks are very soft, about 5 minutes. Arrange leeks evenly over sour cream mixture on pastry. Top with tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Bake until pastry is golden brown and crisp, about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly. Top with goat cheese and herbs before cutting into squares. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Nutritional information per serving (based on 9): 71 calories, 4 grams fat (2 grams saturated fat), 6 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein,1 gram fiber, 51 percent of calories from fat.