In my neck of the woods, it’s no secret who the good cooks are. Luckily, they are generous, too, frequently sharing the best of their best recipes. From Bluffton’s Sun City, Caroline Kennedy is one such cook, whose recipes have won contests, appeared in cookbooks and magazines (like Southern Living) and, of course, in newspapers, including this one. I’ve not yet shared Caroline’s recipes using fresh tomatoes and, with Fourth of July weekend meal plans underway, any one (or all) of them would make fine additions to a celebratory menu. Green Tomato-Basil Pie, robust with fresh basil and melted creamy Monterey Jack cheese, makes for a satisfying first course, or even a light meal. In addition, the pie may also be served as a side dish, along with grilled meat, fish or chicken. Equally good as a side is Greek Tomatoes, garnished with Italian flat leaf parsley, piquant capers and feta cheese. Add a few cracks of fresh pepper and a drizzle of olive oil and your Greek tomatoes are good to go. Caroline’s Marinated Tomatoes and Cucumbers are excellent, as well. In this dish, cucumbers and sweet onions are marinated and refrigerated in a basil-vinaigrette dressing overnight. The next day, twenty minutes before serving, some sliced fresh tomatoes are added to complete the dish. Side dishes have never been easier – or tastier, so long as your tomatoes – the main attraction here – are like Caroline’s recipes, the best of the best.
Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.