Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Cherry Tomato and Aged Gouda Quesadilla

Cherry tomatoes get no respect.  They're a throw-away item on every salad bar, and are often ignored at the grocery in favor of bigger varieties.  It doesn't help that store-bought cherry tomatoes are usually utterly lacking in flavor.  They are also admittedly difficult to work with for some recipes calling for slices of tomatoes or cooking tomatoes.
But for the gardener, cherry tomatoes are hard to beat.  The plants are highly productive even in our hottest weather when full-sized tomatoes are impossible to grow.  Cherry tomatoes are available in many varieties that resist both disease and insect attacks, and they ripen to perfection on the vine without splitting, rotting or dropping.   Available in several sizes and colors, some of our favorite varieties are "Matt's Wild Cherry" (the tiniest and sweetest cherry tomato we've grown), "Yellow Pear" (which produces a ridiculous number of beautiful yellow tear-drop shaped tomatoes) and "Sugary" (which is an unusual oblong shape and pretty pink color).

The key with cherry tomatoes is to take advantage of their strengths.  Don't try making a tomato sauce or ketchup.  Instead, include these little tomatoes in pastas, salads, or even sandwiches.  These tomatoes are naturally sweet and juicy, and require only minimal, if any, cooking.
Here, we include these little tomatoes in another of our garden quesadilla recipes.*  Toss with basil, cilantro and chives to make a quick filling.  Add an aged gouda that has lots of flavor, and these quesadillas come together in just a few minutes.   The results are delicious, especially with cherry tomatoes freshly picked from the garden.

Cherry Tomato and Gouda Quesadilla


2         cups           cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1/2      cup             aged gouda cheese, diced
1/4      cup             cilantro, chopped
2         Tbs             basil, chopped
2         Tbs             chives, chopped
                            sea salt and black pepper
4                           corn tortillas


  1. Combine tomatoes, cheese, cilantro, basil and chives.  Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Sandwich half of the mixture in between 2 tortillas.  Repeat with remaining filling.
  3. Heat vegetable oil in saute pan over medium and heat quesadilla until tortilla is golden brown.  Flip and repeat.  Remove from heat and cook second quesadilla.  Serve immediately.
Printable Recipe

*Other Quesadilla recipes from Vegetable Matter:
Chinese Kale Quesadilla
Butternut Squash, Jalapeno and Feta Quesadilla
Swiss Chard and Queso Fresco Quesadilla


  1. OO! GREAT combo - aged gouda...those tomatoes are lusciously cute!

  2. TOmatoes! I have the biggest cherry tomatoes in a salad yesterday, but not from my garden. Some day!

  3. i had a bad experience with a cherry tomato from a salad bar as a little kid, so i stayed away for years. but i know where to find organic sources and love cherry tomatoes again! i like how their flavor differs from the bigger tomatoes. so sweet and earthy, just a mild difference than the accustomed tomato flavor. i've not seen them in a quesadilla, so this is great! they look tasty!

  4. great info on cherry tomatoes. I've often overlooked them myself at the grocery stores, until I came across a whole bunch right off a farm. THOSE were amazing! I decided that homegrown is the best way to consume these wonders :)

  5. One of my favorite things to do is make fun combos for quesadillas. Love this one!

  6. Wow, this looks so good. I love the use of fresh ingredients, and especially the addition of basil. Thanks for sharing!


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