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British Tomato Fortnight 2019

Updated: May 22, 2020

Love tomatoes and of course promoting British. So much more than just sliced in a sandwich, or chopped in a salad…

Please find below some of the delicious recipes I have been making over the last week.


This sensational savoury tart is made with caramelised onions and fresh British vine tomatoes. It’s topped with puff pastry, baked, then flipped over onto a serving plate to reveal the beautiful tomatoes.

Serves 4-6    Prep time: 25 minutes      Cooking: 25 minutes

Suitable for vegetarians

12 large British vine tomatoes

30g butter

1 large onion, sliced

1tsp caster sugar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

500g pack ready-to-roll puff pastry

A little flour, for sprinkling

2tbsp pesto sauce

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Basil or thyme leaves, to garnish

1 Preheat the oven to 210°C, fan oven 190°C, Gas Mark 7. Halve the British tomatoes and set to one side.

2 Melt the butter in a frying pan or cast iron sauté pan (about 23cm in diameter) with a heatproof handle that will withstand oven temperatures. Fry the onions gently until soft – about 10 minutes. Add the caster sugar and cook for another few minutes until caramelised. Remove the pan from the heat.

3Arrange the tomatoes in the frying pan, cut sides down, packing them in closely. Season with salt and pepper.

4 Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a circle a little larger than the frying pan. Trim with a sharp knife to make a neat circle. Spread the pesto sauce on top, to within 2cm of the edge. Put the pastry on top of the frying pan, pesto sauce side down. Tuck the edges down the sides of the pan.

5Bake for 22-25 minutes, until risen and golden. Cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes. Place a serving plate on top, hold tightly, then invert and remove the pan to reveal the tart. Serve, garnished with basil or thyme (or both!).

Cook’s tip: You could use a sheet of ready-rolled puff pastry to save time.


This is an unbelievably quick and tasty brunch. It’s made with British tomatoes cooked with softened onion, seasoned with paprika for a spicy hit. Serve on toast, topped with a poached egg.

Serves 2       Prep time: 5 minutes         Cooking: 10 minutes

Suitable for vegetarians      Price: £3.11

20g butter – 12p

2tbsp olive oil – 10p

1 large onion, thinly sliced – 15p

2tsp paprika, plus extra for sprinkling – 89p

6 British Large Vine Tomatoes, thickly sliced – £1.15p

2 eggs – 30p

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 slices of sourdough or rustic-style bread – 40p

Chopped fresh thyme or parsley, to garnish –

1Heat half the butter with the olive oil in a frying pan. Gently fry the onion for 5-6 minutes, until very soft.

2 Add the paprika and tomatoes to the frying pan and continue to cook gently for 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Meanwhile, poach the eggs in simmering water for 3-4 minutes, or until done to your liking.

3Toast the bread and spread with the remaining butter. Top with the tomato and onion mixture, then the poached eggs. Serve, sprinkled with thyme or parsley and a pinch of paprika.

Cook’s tip: Transform this into a light supper dish by serving on a bed of rice, quinoa or couscous instead of toast.


Make this colourful main course salad with British tomatoes and beetroot combined with watercress, spinach and rocket with crumbled goat’s cheese and toasted seeds.

Serves 2       Prep time: 15 minutes      Cooking: 2 minutes

Gluten free Suitable for vegetarians   Price: £4.67

2 British Large Vine Tomatoes – 38p

12 British Piccolo Tomatoes – 75p

80g bag watercress, spinach and rocket salad – £1.00

2 cooked beetroot (vacuum packed, not in vinegar), chopped – 40p

100g soft goat’s cheese – 85p

2tbsp mixed seeds (pumpkin, sunflower and sesame) – 27p

2tbsp walnut oil or olive oil – 10p

1tbsp lemon juice – 12p

1tsp wholegrain mustard – 8p

Pinch of caster sugar, salt and pepper

1Slice the British vine tomatoes into wedges, and halve the piccolo tomatoes.

2Share the watercress, spinach and rocket between two serving plates and arrange the tomatoes and beetroot on top. Crumble the goat’s cheese over the salads.

3 Toast the seeds in a dry frying pan for 1-2 minutes, then scatter them over the salads.

4 For the dressing, mix together the oil, lemon juice and mustard with a pinch of sugar, salt and pepper. Drizzle over the salads, then serve.

Cook’s tip: To make this salad suitable for vegans, omit the goat’s cheese – or use tofu instead.


Check out these three inspirational ideas for quick and tasty ways to top different breads with British tomatoes – they’re delish!

Serves 3       Prep time: 15 minutes      Cooking: 10 minutes

Sourdough with British Tomatoes, Avocado and Chives

Lightly toast a slice of sourdough bread and top it with finely chopped British vine tomatoes mixed with a little red onion, olive oil and lemon juice. Arrange sliced avocado on top, season with a little salt and pepper, then serve with chopped fresh chives.

Suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

Granary with Chargrilled Courgette, Cherry Tomato and Feta

Slice a small courgette lengthways, brush with olive oil, then chargrill or grill until tender. Toast a slice of granary or wholemeal bread and top it with the courgette strips and some halved British cherry tomatoes. Crumble feta cheese or goat’s cheese on top, then serve, sprinkled with chopped flat-leaf parsley.

Suitable for vegetarians.

Parma Ham and British Plum Tomato

Toast a slice of ciabatta or crusty white bread, rub it with a little olive oil, then spread it thickly with ricotta, low fat soft cheese or dolcelatte. Top it with a slice or two of Parma ham and 3-4 British baby plum tomatoes, halved. Season with black pepper and serve, scattered with a few basil leaves.


Roasted vegetables and juicy British cherry tomatoes make this tasty main-course salad.

Serves 2       Prep time: 15min    Cook time: 25min

2tbsp olive oil

300g sweet potato, peeled and cut into small chunks

1 large red pepper, deseeded and cut into chunks

1 large red onion, sliced into wedges

12 British cherry tomatoes on the vine, halved

250g pack cooked red and white quinoa

2 large handfuls of mixed salad leaves

2tbsp mixed seeds (e.g. pumpkin, linseed, sunflower, chia seeds)


2tbsp olive oil

1tbsp white wine vinegar

1tsp Dijon mustard

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan oven 180°C, Gas Mark 6.

2Put the sweet potato into a roasting tin with the olive oil and toss to coat. Roast for 15 minutes, add the pepper and red onion, then roast for 10 more minutes, or until tender. Remove from the oven. Add the British cherry tomatoes and stir them through gently.

3Microwave the quinoa according to pack instructions, or cook in a little water to heat thoroughly. Stir it through the roasted vegetables. Share between 2 serving plates with the salad leaves.

4 For the dressing, mix together the olive oil, vinegar and mustard with a little salt and pepper. Drizzle over the salads.

5Toast the mixed seeds in a dry frying pan for about 1 minute. Scatter them over the salads and serve at once.

Cook’s tip:You could use butternut squash instead of sweet potato. As an alternative to cherry tomatoes, use British vine tomatoes, sliced into wedges.


Enjoy char-grilled sourdough, topped with grilled Halloumi and sliced British tomatoes, given a fresh twist with quick-to-make mint pesto.

Serves 2       Prep time: 10min    Cook time: 5min

Suitable for vegetarians

4 slices sourdough bread

2tbsp olive oil

150g Halloumi cheese, sliced

4 large British vine tomatoes, sliced

Mint pesto:

Small bunch of mint

5tbsp olive oil

1tsp white wine vinegar

50g ground almonds

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 First, make the mint pesto. Pick the mint leaves from the stalks and put them into a small blender with the olive oil, vinegar and a splash of water. Blitz together for a few moments. Add the ground almonds and blend for a few more seconds. Season with a little salt and pepper.

2 Brush the slices of sourdough with olive oil, then char-grill or grill until lightly browned.

3At the same time, dry-fry the slices of Halloumi in a frying pan, turning them over once and cooking until golden brown.

4 Arrange the slices of sourdough on two serving plates. Spread with mint pesto, then add the sliced tomatoes and Halloumi cheese. Serve, drizzled with a little more pesto sauce.

Cook’s tip: You could use basil or parsley instead of mint in the pesto.

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