Smearing herby mayo on toasted French bread for Summer Tomato Crostini

Summer Tomato Crostini

September 25
3 min read

The Go-to Summer Appetizer

As a gardener, you know I love nothing more than a harvest basket full of sweet, rip summer tomatoes. And while Savory Tomato Jam is a pantry staple, these Summer Tomato Crostini are a fan (and household) favorite using the best of the summer garden and a French baguette. Easy to assemble in less than 15 minutes, you’ll be the hit of the neighborhood potluck or have a delightful meal perfect for one.

The Modern Potager Kitchen Garden

The joy of the modern potager is getting to expand your culinary skills and make restaurant-quality meals at home. Picking fresh ingredients from the garden and turning them into something that awakens your tastebuds and thrills is really what life is all about.

Untoasted French baguette placed on a baking sheet
Toasted French baguette on a baking sheet for Summer Tomato Crostini

The origin of tomatoes dates back hundreds of years to Central America where they were well known to the Aztecs who cultivated them from a small berry into something more palatable.

History reveals that European explorers and conquistadors returned to Europe with tomato seeds in the holds of their ships. The popularity of the tomato was not immediate. It wasn’t until the nineteenth century, when tomatoes went from being a largely ornamental and medicinal plant to becoming a foundational food for much of world cuisine. Research shared by the University of California Cooperative Extension suggests 80% of all tomato varieties were extinct by 1910. Farmers started keeping many of these seeds to preserve them.

But what exactly are heirloom tomatoes and what makes them so special? The seeds are what make an heirloom tomato, well, an heirloom tomato. They have been open-pollinated and passed down from season to season for over 50 years, preserved by farmers and gardeners from the tomato plants that produced the best fruit. What’s special about pen-pollinated seeds is that they will reproduce true plants year after year (with the right growing conditions). Planted the next season, these cherished seeds produce bright, colorful, juicy, flavorful, and memory-making fruit with storied histories.

Slicing yellow heirloom tomatoes for Summer Tomato Crostini
Ingredients for Summer Tomato Crostini - slices of untoasted French baguette

Summer Tomato Crostini

Makes  12-14 servings


1 crusty french baguette, sliced for small toasts
6-8 medium heirloom tomatoes, sliced *Select colorful fruits for variety
2 tablespoons quality mayo or aioli
1 teaspoon fresh basil, chiffonade, divided
1 roasted garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 teaspoon fresh parsley, minced
1 teaspoon minced chives or scallions
1 teaspoon, lemon zest
Sea Salt + Freshly ground pepper

1) Preheat the oven broiler. Slice baguette into small rounds and place on a baking sheet lined with a cooling rack. Bake for 3-5 minutes until top side is golden. Flip and bake for 2-3 additional minutes until each side is toasted. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

2) In a small bowl, mix mayo with lemon zest, thyme, parsley, chives, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon of basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3) Slice tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Assemble the crostini with a small spoonful of herby mayo on each slice. Top with a tomato slice and garnish with basil or other fresh herbs.


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