Well, summer is fast approaching its end, but with that comes fresh fall fruits coming off the trees and the last of the garden veggies being dug up and plucked from the gardens. With the coolness in the morning air I’m starting to dream of casseroles. Rustic Tomato Spinach Bake is a wonderful way to use the scads of fresh tomatoes you’re secretly hoarding. It’s an aromatic, homey casserole flavoured with fresh basil, garlic and a good dose of parmesan cheese.
The recipe is inspired by Smitten Kitchen’s Scalloped Tomatoes, which she adapted from Ina Garten. Deb from Smitten Kitchen suggests serving with a poached egg and I couldn’t agree more. Tomato soaked bread chunks infused with garlic and laced with spinach are the perfect cradle for a soft runny egg. It’s lunch in heaven for me! I could seriously eat this for lunch all week, and since my husband is not a spinach fan, this may very well come true for me.
Although great with a runny egg, this casserole shines with roasted or grilled meats and would also be lovely with a green salad. Enjoy!
Recipe inspiration for Rustic Tomato Spinach Bake from Smitten Kitchen’s Scalloped Tomatoes
- 4 cups crustless white bread cubes 3/4" dice
- 4 tbsp olive oil divided
- 1/2 cup chopped white onion 1/4" dice
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 8 ounces fresh spinach stemmed
- 2 pounds chopped fresh tomatoes 1/2" dice
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp course black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh italian parley chopped
- 3/4 cup fresh parmesan cheese finely grated
- 1/3 cup gruyere cheese finely grated
- Preheat oven to 350℉. In a large bowl toss together bread cubes and 2 tbsp olive oil. Spread bread cubes into a single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 until golden, tossing once or twice. Remove from oven and set aside.
- Add remaining 2 tbsp of oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 2 minutes until starting to soften. Stir in garlic and continue to cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add spinach and toss until wilted. Stir in tomatoes, sugar and salt, stirring to combine. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes until 3/4 of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and stir in fresh parsley, basil and bread cubes.
- Lightly spray a shallow 4-5 cup casserole dish with non stick spray. Pour mixture into casserole and spread out. Sprinkle with parmesan and gruyere. Bake for 30 minutes until bubbly and starting to brown. Remove from oven and allow to rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.
This was really good. A great way to use up all those garden tomatoes.
Hi, thank you for commenting! So glad you enjoyed the recipe, I like it as a side dish or as is with a green salad.