I could eat tomatoes for every meal of the day. Add a little sugar to a thick wedge in the morning. Sandwich a few Brandywines between two slices of mayonnaise-y stick-to-the-roof-of-your-mouth bread. And where do I begin with fried green tomatoes? Those crispy, salty, tart pieces of heaven are just too delicious to relegate to only dinner time.
I knew when tomato season rolled around I had to make something that would draw out the earthy, fruity flavors. I immediately thought of a recipe I made from Vivian Howard’s debut cookbook, Deep Run Roots. The North Carolina Chef’s tomato pie recipe was next level tomato-y goodness. Combining roasted and fresh tomatoes with herbs, a flaky crust and a salty asiago topping made my taste buds dance for days. I seriously kicked that Atkins diet to the curb that week.
While I’ll continue to make her recipe – and would recommend it to any ‘mater lover – I found making the crust from scratch plus prepping the tomatoes a little time consuming for a weekday. I must have my ‘maters 24/7. Instead, I decided to adapt her recipe to something more malleable for a weekday meal.
In this Tomato Cobbler, I used her tomato filling as the base and ditched the crust for a drop biscuit topping. Her asiago, parmesan topping with mayo reminded me a lot of pimento cheese so I decided to reimagine the topping as a biscuit peppered with sharp cheddar cheese and pimentos. And before I could finish a Real Housewives episode I had a tomato cobbler calling my name from the kitchen.
Tomato Cobbler with Pimento Cheese Drop BiscuitsPrint This
Tomato Base (adapted from Deep Run Roots)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 yellow onion cut in half and then into slices (so you have half moons)
- 2 teaspoons salt (divided)
- 3 pounds of largely diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon of sugar (divided)
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup julienned fresh basil leaves
Pimento Cheese Drop Biscuits
- 1 cup self-rising flour
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 pinch smoked paprika
- 1/2 stick cold butter
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup drained pimentos
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a colander, toss half of the tomatoes with ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon of sugar. Let the tomatoes drain for at least 30 minutes. Place the remaining tomatoes in a medium bowl and toss with the thyme, olive oil and ½ teaspoon of salt. In one layer, spread the tomatoes onto a foil lined baking sheet. Use a large enough baking sheet to give the tomatoes room to breathe and not steam in the oven. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the tomatoes brown a little.
While the tomatoes roast, heat the butter in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onions and ½ teaspoon of salt. Coat the onions in oil and after about a minute on medium heat, turn the onions down to low heat. Cook onions until they caramelize, about 40 minutes. Stir periodically during this time.
Once all the filling elements are done combine them all into a large mixing bowl with the basil, pepper and remaining salt and sugar. Spoon into a medium casserole dish. Prep the biscuits.
Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees.
In another large mixing bowl add the flour, garlic powder and smoked paprika. Mix. Using a fork or pastry cutter, cut in the cold butter into the flour mixer. You’re looking for a rough sandy texture. Add the remaining biscuit ingredients. Quickly mix with a wooden spoon. Using two spoons, scoop about 1/3 cup of dough. Using the second spoon, scrape the dough into a dollop on top of the tomato mixture. Continue making dollops across your casserole dish leaving a little space in between each dollop. I was able to get six drop biscuits into my casserole dish. You may do more or less.
Bake the cobbler for at least 25-30 minutes or until the biscuits are brown. Serve warm or cold.