Napping before dinner

I've only just come to the conclusion that the 4th of July is my favorite holiday of the year. Unlike Christmas or Thanksgiving, Independence Day adds the all important ingredient of sunshine to a food-filled holiday. Just as we intended, we spent our long weekend in Michigan with very little on the agenda. I spent some well earned cash at Symons General Store's cheese counter as a crate of Piper's Pyramid was being delivered and could not be denied. Highlights included a sunset boat cruise with my Aunts and Uncles on Walloon Lake, a very hot bike ride, and a romantic glass of pink bubbly with my hubby that left us both napping on the back deck before dinner.

That said, I had very little energy left for cooking, but knew a Tomato Pie was on the cards. I'm usually depressed by the tasteless tomatoes found in the supermarket, and even though we're not on the height of tomato season when you can easily find yourself with a surplus of red fruits, this is a great way to kick of the summer tomato season. I was able to get some great tomatoes from Bill's Farm Market and couldn't wait to get this pie in the oven.

This recipe comes from my Mom's friend, Linda Priddy, whose genius recipes have been mentioned previously, and this is definitely one of my favorites to date. Jen, her daughter in-law, sent me this recipe, and I've been anxiously awaiting the summer to give it a try. It's a tomato pie and it's extremely quiche-esque, but I'd prefer to keep the name pie attached to it. It's perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner, and I ended up making four of them to take to my Aunt and Uncles as a contribution to our over night spent with them. You can make your own pastry, or you cheat and use frozen pie shells from the supermarket. Either way, I can guarantee this pie will be part of your summer must-have meals for the months ahead.

Tomato Pie
Adapted from Linda Priddy

9 inch pie shell:
(make your own and pre-bake or pre-bake a frozen shell according to instructions)
3 large tomatoes, peeled cored and sliced thick (blanch quickly in boiling water to peel easily)
3 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
2 eggs, beaten
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp real mayonnaise
3 tbsp chopped green onions
1-2 cups shredded sharp cheddar and gruyere cheese
salt and freshly cracked pepper

Preheat the oven to 375F. Fill pie shell with layers of tomatoes and green onions, seasoning the tomatoes well in between the layers. Combine the basil, eggs, garlic and mayonnaise and pour over the layers. Top everything with the cheeses and bake for about 35 minutes until lightly browned.

Serve with a herb salad, shaved carrots and topped with a honey-mustard vinaigrette.

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