Like the last dregs of sweet ice cream dripping down the sides of a freshly pressed waffle cone we are lapping up every last bit of Summer. It’s true that nearly an entire month remains of the season but this week school starts and with the oldest darting off to Kindergarten this year, it suddenly feels like Fall is near. While I have no problem with the Fall, in fact it is my favorite season for eating, cooking and reliving childhood giddiness around holidays, Summer still remains and there is much more eating to do. Like those last few lingering tastes off the cone, these remaining days are often the sweetest.

There are birthday cakes to be made, parties to plan and pointy, poof topped hats to don. There are toes to be dipped in and cooled by the sea, sand to be rinsed off said toes, and bbq’s to be lit. There are more meals to be eaten outdoors and a few more strawberries to pluck from our few still-producing plants.

There are tomatoes.

These are the tomato days. When the curtain of summer just starts to draw. When the days are for sleeveless tops and the evenings require light sweaters. Tomatoes have graciously been working all season to provide us with a fruit so sweet, very little needs to be done in order to prepare them for dinner. Considering all the other activities that surround these tomato days this is indeed a gift.

In an evening when we lingered out in the sun well into the dinner hour I searched for something to make and quick (can you tell I’m not much of a planner?). I reached for a few slices of thick-cut bread, brushed them with olive oil and placed on the grill pan. While the bread was getting branded with deep, smokey grill marks I grated (yes, grated – as you would cheese) a large tomato right into a bowl.

When the bread was sufficiently crisped on the outside with a bit of tenderness still remaining I rubbed the rough outer crumb with a garlic clove, topped with a couple spoonfuls of the fresh, grated tomato and finished of with a few curls of Parmesan. Dinner was prepared, served and devoured with still enough time to linger in the last few drips of the sun.

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Tomato Toast with Parmesan

serves 2-4
4 slices thick cut bread

2 Tablespoons extra- virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove

1 medium tomato



Brush both sides of the bread with olive oil. Place on a hot grill pan (or an outdoor grill). Grill until dark char marks sear the bread while the inside still remains a bit soft. This should take about 3 minutes per side.

While the bread is still warm rub a garlic clove over the surface of both sides of the bread. Set aside.

Using the largest side on a box grater, grate the tomato into a bowl.

Spoon a hefty amount of the tomato onto each slice of the bread. The bread will soak up some of the juice – this is exactly what you want.

Finish with a few shavings of Parmesan. You can use a vegetable peeler to get long, beautiful strands of Parmesan.

43 Responses to “Tomato Toast with Parmesan”

  1. Kathryn

    Oh you have the ability to give us recipes that I just want to run to the kitchen to make immediately. Love everything about this.

  2. Dorie Colangelo

    My boyfriend and I were introduced to grated tomato on garlicky toast by friends of ours and we couldn’t get enough of it. It will be a staple at all my upcoming dinner parties, and I must try your version with Parmesan; it looks gorgeous.

  3. sara

    looks so perfect. Neither of us typically like raw tomatoes, but I’ve been getting incredible ones in my CSA basket that are worth making an exception for. I just eat them raw with my eggs, but would love to have another easy option like this. Still won’t be able to sell it to hugh, but looks perfect. Lovely photos, friend.

  4. Amy @ Spin The Meal

    What an intriguing idea – grated tomatoes? I’m guessing they have to be quite firm so they don’t turn to mush before they go the grater??? My mouth is watering looking at your beautiful pictures!

  5. fabiola@notjustbaked

    This is one of all time favorites ways to use the loveliest tomatoes. My plants(here in the NW) have been acting silly this year, as I have heard is normal. Being it’s only my second summer here, coming from CA, by way of Mexico, tomato season is way different, takes some getting used to. I have just started harvesting my biggest girls, and I will put them on toast to taste their fullest potential. Because these look amazing!

  6. Nicole

    This is what I love about you/your blog. One moment there will be a deeply intricate (in my opinion) recipe for some baked confection……and then next, a gorgeously simple rustic post like this one. I ADORE this, so so much. And though I just devoured lunch about a minute ago, am still salivating over these toasts!!


  7. Suzanne Perazzini

    Bruschetta is a special favourite and reminds me of my years living in Italy. As you lose your summer, we gain it. Spring has already started in the southern hemisphere (it starts 1st September down here) but it’s still bone cold and raining. It can only get better and I’m looking forward to it.

  8. Rachel

    There is just something about simple ingredients, when they are put together-something magical happens. I feel like this is what happens with this recipe. So simple with flavors so clean, and fresh. Looks amazing! Will be making these for sure!

  9. Christy

    I always seem to forget about using bread on my grill pan! And we do have plenty of tomatoes from the farmers market still, so this will be on the menu for next week 🙂

    As always, in adoration of your photos. Beautiful work 🙂

  10. Amy

    i made this last night as an impromptu dinner with a side of chicken…so delish and so easy! who knew grated tomato could be so awesome?! thanks for all your yummy dinner ideas and insight into life’s little pleasures 🙂

  11. Deb

    The summer tomato glut has finally arrived here along the coast. This weekend is reserved for picking and then canning. I am so looking forward to having too many tomatoes and enjoying the late summer pleasure of recipes like the Tomato Toast with Parmesan. A luscious ode to the bounty of summer!

  12. Kasey

    “These are the tomato days.” My favorite days. The kiddos are looking so grownup! I’ve fallen in love with fall the last few years but summer definitely still holds a very special place in my heart.

  13. Tiff

    This looks sensational! Looks like I definitely need to invest in one of those brushes to smear on some butter.

    Aww your little one is off to Kindergarten! They do grow up fast.

  14. Cookie and Kate

    I spent my labor day weekend at a friend’s wedding and hadn’t given any thought to summer’s end until now. I hardly went swimming and didn’t taste a single snow cone. Do you think I can make up for all that with some of your tomato toasts? Toast is about all I want to make these days.

  15. Jen Baker

    Love the simplicity, elegance, and how cheap this is to make. Pretty sure I’m going to pair this with some wine tonight for a fantastic weekend starter.

  16. Mary Beth

    Sounds and looks delicious…..but, I don’t think this could ever suffice as dinner in my household! Perhaps with the addition of prosciutto or a grilled chicken breast? For myself, perfect! But I live with 3 other people of the male species.


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