Sarah Leah Chase's Scalloped Tomatoes

Hi everyone!  And happy Labor Day! 

We're back and had a wonderful time. Once I get my photos organized, I'll do a post on our Nevis vacation. (I still have one more island post to go on our French Polynesian adventure of several years ago. That'll come first.) I'm looking forward to visiting all of you and find out what you've been doing. 
My daughter and I made a reading list for you. Click here to see what we read and loved this summer.

Sarah's Cold-Weather Cooking is one of my favorite cookbooks. I've mentioned it several times and cook from it frequently. It was published in 1990 and this recipe for Scalloped Tomatoes was included in it. Ina Garten made it on her TV show a couple years ago and mentioned the recipe was from her friend Sarah Chase. My ears perked up....Ina has mentioned Sarah before and always generously gives her full credit.  She adapted Sarah's recipe slightly, so I double checked the original in Sarah's cookbook. I made a mental note to give it a try, but never got around to it. Last year, Deb from Smitten Kitchen posted Ina's version and gave it a thumbs up. So it sure has made the rounds.

I know it says "cold weather" in the cookbook title, but this recipe sure seems loaded with summer flavors to me  (garden tomatoes and fresh basil!) so I finally got around to making it.  And shame on me, I made Sarah's original recipe with bacon grease. How could I not?? You can find Ina's recipe HEREWhat a super side dish to serve with something on the grill. Actually, I was nibbling on it for a couple days after as well. All those lovely Parmesan and bacon-encrusted croutons! 

Scalloped Tomatoes

From Cold-Weather Cooking by Sarah Leah Chase

3 tablespoons bacon fat
2 cups (1/2-inch diced) French bread
16 plum tomatoes, cut 1/2-inch dice (about 2 1/2 pounds)
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup julienned basil leaves, lightly packed
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat the bacon fat in a large (12 inch) saute pan over medium heat. Add the bread cubes and stir to coat with the oil. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the cubes are evenly browned.
Add the tomatoes, garlic and sugar to then pan and continue to cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, add the basil and remove from the heat.

Pour the tomato mixture into a shallow (6 to 8 cup) baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with the Parmesan cheese and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the top is browned and the tomatoes are bubbly. Serve hot or warm.



  1. Good to know that you had a marvelous weekend! Those scalloped tomatoes must taste wonderful. A great idea.



  2. Welcome back Barbara. We're glad you're back and we've missed you. So glad to hear you had a nice vacation.

    Scalloped tomatoes are perfect to make when you return from vacation's restaurant food. I always want something comforting that reminds me of home. After a while, I get tired of eating out and crave some of my homemade favorites. Your dish looks delicious and I'm sure the bacon fat brings a lot of flavor to it. I make something similar with a little less bread and love it too.

  3. Welcome back! and what a return! Absolutely a wonderful dish thanks for sharing,.

  4. Welcome back. Can't wait to hear about your trip and see photos--sort of vicarious traveling for me!!

    I love Sara Leah Chase's recipe. I have both of her cookbooks (think she has only two). She also co-authored the first Silver Palate. I've never done this recipe but will.


  5. Sure is good to "see" you Barbara! Can't wait to here your stories and see all your pics!

    Those scalloped tomatoes look yummy. I would have used bacon grease too:)

    Thanks for sharing, Barbara and once again, welcome back!

  6. Oh Barbara, YOU ALWAYS serve up the most gorgeous dishes that make me want to whip out my apron and start cooking again. Even though I had a fabulous and relaxing summer vacation, I am afraid I abandoned my culinary skills and trading in cooking for reading and writing and artistic endeavors!!!

    THANK YOU FOR YOUR WELL-WISHES my dear. You are ever so kind! TOMORROW IS IT!!! Oh, I don't care how long I have been doing this, I get butterflies, even as I type this!!!


  7. I have really missed reading your post, I'm so happy that you are back and that you had such a good time. AND you made this beautiful tomato recipe, how wonderful!
    *kisses* HH

  8. Dear Barbara really Im so happy you come back this look absolutely delicious, I really missed you, LOL gloria

  9. You're back, chouette!
    Looking forward to hearing all about it.
    Looked at your book list and know what you mean about ROOM. I felt just the same way but then got hooked and couldn't read it fast enough.
    This cold weather dish sounds just up my street,I think I've seen it in one of Ina's books but never got around to making it.
    Thanks for the nudge.

  10. Welcome back, Barbara. I missed your wonderful comments and hope you had a great vacation.

    This tomato dish reminds me of a favorite of my ex's mom... tomato pudding. Brown sugar sweeteded bread pudding with tomato... I just love it and this looks like a savory cousin I will enjoy trying... thanks for the recipe!!!

  11. Oh, my--that dish look dangerously good. (BACON!)
    I'll have to add scalloped tomatoes to my repertoire.
    Glad you are back from a wonderful vacation--can't wait to see pictures of the beautiful place.

  12. Your scalloped tomatoes sound very delicious Barbara!

  13. Welcome back! That cold weather recipe with summer yums is perfect for our very cool, early fall week ahead.

  14. I have to make these:) Oh Barbara they look amazing~

  15. PS love the reading list! I have only read Room from your list ..Thank you for the tips..
    I just read Left Neglected..same author as Still Alice..I really liked both:)

  16. Welcome back home Barbara. It is always nice to arrive home isn't it, no matter what fun we've had:D These tomatoes would be a splash of summer all year round.

  17. Welcome back Barbara! These tomatoes sound fabulous and a must make.

  18. Glad to hear you had a wonderful time, and glad to see you back! This tomato dish is lovely, and it would be a shame to wait for cold weather to enjoy it. I say make it now, while tomatoes are sweet and delicious. :)

  19. I'm so glad you read Room! I have In the Garden of Beasts on CD. I'm saving it for my next long drive. I'm glad you told me about it. That will move it up my stack.

    Can't wait to see your pictures of Nevis. I've cruised past it. I can see what I missed.

    Welcome back. I missed you!

  20. Just reading the list of ingredients, I knew it must be good; that bacon is imparting lots of flavor, the bread soaks up the tomato juice and the dish gets cheesy too. Waiting for the island adventure photos!

  21. Welcome back! Looking forward to your vacation photos.

    If Ina's is adapting a version of Sarah's recipe you know the recipe on both counts have to be delicious.

    This dish would be good any time of year.


  22. Welcome back Barbara! I never had tomatoes prepared this way. They sound decadent and delicious!

  23. Welcome back, can't wait to hear more about your vacation. The tomatoes look excellent!

  24. Welcome back Barbara!!!! You have been missed terribly!
    Baked tomatoes looks delish!

  25. Happy Labor Day Barbara! I wish we had one here as I know what fun it is for you guys. And this scalloped tomato bake looks absolutely scrumptious! :D

  26. This looks wonderful and I totally would use bacon great as well!

  27. I'm so glad you had a wonderful vacation! I can't wait to see the photos and hear the stories.

    As for this recipe, you had me at bacon fat. Good eatin'!

  28. mmmm, oh i want to gobble this up. i would never think to make tomatoes like this, but i love it!

  29. What a perfect recipe for right now! I am buried in tomatoes and will try this soon! Looks delicious!

  30. I definitely would have used the bacon grease as well--sounds delightful and definitely reminiscent of Summer!

  31. Welcome back. Looking forward to your vacation pictorial. The tomatoes look fantastic and lucky for me I still have loads of tomatoes in the garden.

  32. Welcome back! Missed you and can't wait to hear about your travels. In the meantime, this looks fantastic. I agree, it has summer written all over it!

  33. Welcome home, Barbara. I'm looking forward to seeing your travel photos and reading your stories. Tomatoes here are at their peak so your timing is perfect with this recipe. I've never made one of Ina's recipes that I didn't like.

  34. nice...glad you are back and that you had a nice summer...this sounds wonderful....bacon makes everything better...smiles.

  35. Welcome back!

    So, I am definitely stopping for some French bread and making this tonight for dinner....

    Glad you had a nice vacation!

  36. Hi Barbara and welcome back!
    Glad that you had a wonderful vacation and look forward to hearing about it and seeing some photos.
    I love tomatoes and this dish sounds great, so I look forward to making this.
    Also thanks for the book list, looks like some good ones there.

    Happy week

  37. Welcome back, can't wait to see the pictures from both of those trips!

  38. These potatoes look amazing! I love the addition of the tomatoes and bacon fat...yum!

  39. Wecome back Barbara! This is a very seasonal recipe for just now!

  40. Barbara..we had these last night..They are amazing:) Thank you..I will make a little post one day..Have a great day.

  41. Definitely adding this one to the try list, looks amazing!

  42. Welcome back. I am looking forward to your photos and tales of your getaway.

    How did you know that I have been dragging around a piece of paper with a Scalloped tomato recipe on it? I will have to print yours up although, I can't use the bacon. Scalloped tomatoes, here we come.

  43. I LOVE scalloped tomatoes and yours look absolutely perfect!

    Welcome home :)


  44. I'm so glad to hear you had such a fun vacation! These tomatoes definitely look summery to me...and cheesy...and delicious!

  45. What a great book list! Room is at the top of my must-read list, and you've really intrigued me with The Poison Tree. And I just heard of the Sisters Brothers a day or two ago when it was shortlisted for the Booker.

    Looking forward to your holiday posts!

  46. Welcome back, Barbara! I hope you had a wonderful vacation...I'm definitely looking forward to your upcoming posts on it! I'm off to check out your reading list!

  47. Welcome back Laura! I bet you had a fantastic vacation. What a beautiful meal for a new start.
    Hope you're well.
    Blessings, Kristy ((hugs))

  48. First time here and I am glad that I found your blog. Awesome recipes and brilliant posts.

  49. Hi Barbara,
    I adore Sarah Lee Chase and as soon as the air gets cool I aways take out here cold weather cooking book. This recipe looks wonderful. I have been away a lot this summer and have missed your blog...

  50. I did this for dinner using cherry tomatoes--used up (almost) all of them! Mmmmm! Even my tomato hating kids dug in, though I had to tell them not to take all the cheese ;-)

  51. anything that starts out with bacon fat has a lot of good potential. :)

  52. This is definitely perfect for this time of year. It sounds amazing.

  53. A belated welcome home, Barbara! I'm still having a hard time catching up with all of my friends but life is good so I can't complain :)

    This sounds wonderful!!! I just saw Monique's post about it too. I have fresh tomatoes and basil - all I need is something for the grill and we're set!



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