Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas
Hands-on Time
12 Mins
Total Time
50 Mins
Yield
Serves 8 (serving size: about 3/4 cup)

Take care not to cook the tomatoes too long: This dish tastes best if they are still a bit firm. Garnish, if you can, with basil leaves of different shapes and colors, both green and purple. Serve the gratin warm or at room temperature.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 400°.

Step 2

Tear bread with your hands to form coarse crumbs; spread in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 3 minutes or until lightly toasted. Combine breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons oil, parsley, thyme, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, and Parmesan cheese in a bowl.

Step 3

Cut tomatoes into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Place tomatoes in a shallow dish; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add remaining 1/4 cup oil, torn basil, vinegar, garlic, and shallot; toss gently to coat.

Step 4

Arrange tomato slices in a shallow 3- to 4-quart glass or ceramic baking dish. Pour any remaining liquid from the bowl over the tomatoes. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes (tomatoes should still be firm). Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture evenly over tomatoes. Bake at 400° for 10 minutes or until breadcrumbs are golden. Remove dish from oven; let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with small basil leaves, if desired.

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