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As thoughts of this year’s summer garden fill my head, like visions of sugar plum fairies, I wanted to share this ‘oh so simple, yet delicious’ recipe that can be featured many ways. The secret to success…cooking the tomatoes allows the heat to plump-up this fruit masquerading as a vegetable. The finished product is a luscious compote to top grilled foods or serve as a side dish. I like to spoon the compote over pan fried pork chops, place it on top of poached eggs, and use it as a pizza topping. To make it into a quick appetizer, adorn polenta rounds with the compote or add it on top of toast with a dab of ricotta or marscarpone cheese. The possibilities are endless. I look forward to hearing your delicious combinations.

Tomato Basil Compote


1 1/2 TBS olive oil

1 clove garlic, peeled & finely chopped

1 1/2 pint yellow, red, and orange tomatoes

salt & freshly ground pepper

8 large basil leaves


Heat oil in a large-size skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook approximately 3-5 minutes or until soft and golden brown. Add tomatoes, season well with salt and pepper, and cook no longer than 5 minutes, stirring often, until tomatoes are just warm and ready to burst. Add basil and cook approximately 1 minute, until just wilted.

If canning to preserve, place in glass jar while still hot and seal lid immediately to make a seal. I like to make a batch of this towards the end of summer so that as we head into the winter months I can break out a jar to recapture the flavors of days gone by.

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