Happy Weekend Recipes

HAPPY FRIDAY: HANOVER TOMATO SEASON

Hanover Tomato Naan Pizza / 7thhouseontheleft.com

If you’re from the Richmond area, chances are you already know all about Hanover tomatoes. In our house, they are the only tomatoes worthy of a tomato sandwich (soft potato bread, mayo, a few slices of Hanover tomato, kosher salt and ground pepper… yum!) and are highly coveted by our out-of-town family.

The season is at its peak in early July and kicked off my the Hanover Tomato Festival, which was this past weekend. It’s a huge annual event that brings in over 30,000 people from all over the East Coast. They’re games, a petting zoo, lots of vendor booths, live music and a bunch of really yummy food using Hanover tomatoes. Greg said it always reminds him of Food Network’s Iron Chef America with Hanover tomatoes being the “secret ingredient”, haha. They also have a tomato contest (with categories like size, best tasting, best recipe, etc.), the “Best Dressed Tomato” contest and crown the Little Miss Hanover Tomato. Yeah, we take our tomatoes pretty seriously around here.

Hanover Tomato Naan Pizza / 7thhouseontheleft.com

We didn’t make it to the festival this year (it was the same day the carport ceiling was being done), but with Hanover tomato season being in full swing, we’ve definitely been eating our fair share of tomatoes. One of our favorite things to make around this time of year is our version of a caprese naan pizza. It’s fast and simple – my kind of cooking, especially when we’re busy like we’ve been the last month or so.

Hanover Tomato Naan Pizza / 7thhouseontheleft.com

I start off with a pre-made garlic naan (we buy them in the fresh foods section at Target) and add a thin layer of pesto. Pesto is great for this because it already has all of the olive oil, basil and garlic you need in one jar. Add a few slices of fresh mozzarella (you can make 2 naan pizzas with an 8oz ball) and fresh tomato. Then, just top it off with some kosher salt and ground pepper and pop it in the oven on 425Β° until the cheese is all bubbly and starting to brown. That’s it! So simple. You can also cook it on the grill for that extra smokey crunch factor. Try it. You’ll love it.

As for our plans this weekend… Greg has to work on Saturday, so my cousin/BFF Dana, is coming to town from Charlottesville to have a “Les Miserables Day”. We’re going to watch the movie and make French crepes, haha. We’re dorks. As for the time before and after our girl day, Greg and I will be working on our little landscaping project. Fingers crossed that everything will go smoothly. Tune in next week for the results. Happy weekend, everyone!

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22 Comments

  • Reply
    susan
    July 19, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Lovely recipe! This looks like the perfect weekend lunch. Thanks for posting it πŸ™‚

    • Reply
      Jessie Bryant
      July 23, 2013 at 10:56 am

      I second the motion, Susan! This is really a great recipe. I’m planning to make this next weekend. My kids will surely love this. πŸ˜‰

  • Reply
    Melissa
    July 19, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Your weekend sounds like so much fun! I want to comeeeee! haha

  • Reply
    Linda
    July 19, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Oh, that does look good! I’ll have to drive the three hours to Hanover to get some of those beauties. Probably worth the drive!

  • Reply
    Lillie
    July 19, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Yumm! Have a good weekend you two!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      July 19, 2013 at 10:25 am

      Thanks, you too!

  • Reply
    Lindsay
    July 19, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Growing up I absolutely hated tomatoes. Hated. But now I can’t get enough of them. This looks so easy and yummy!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      July 19, 2013 at 10:25 am

      Sounds like me and mushrooms! I used to HATE them and now I’ll order anything just because it has mushrooms. They have to be cooked though. I haven’t warmed up to raw ones quite yet.

  • Reply
    Angie
    July 19, 2013 at 10:25 am

    Looks delicious, and that little blue bowl is too cute. I’ve never had pesto and I’m scared to try since I don’t like basil. I’ve heard you can make it with kale or cilantro so I might try that someday…when I’m braver.

    • Reply
      Ashley
      July 19, 2013 at 10:32 am

      I’ve never been a big fan of basil either, but I love pesto. If you like artichokes, you should try artichoke pesto! You can get it at Whole Foods and Kroger (I think). It’s a really yummy alternative. We love eating it with crostinis with a little bit of olive oil and garlic.

    • Reply
      Kristin
      July 22, 2013 at 7:56 pm

      For something different you can also try tapenade. If you are like me and don’t like olives very much Trader Joe’s has a Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke Tapenade that is to die for! We make caprese pizza all the time with the same ingredients as Ashley and Greg, but after a recent trip to Trader Joe’s we tried this for a change. It is great!

  • Reply
    Lisa
    July 19, 2013 at 10:28 am

    I went to the Hanover Tomato festival this year! It was awesome minus the rain. Our favorite treat was definitely the fried green tomatoes. My hubby really liked the tomato funnel cakes. So tasty!

  • Reply
    Meghan B
    July 19, 2013 at 10:30 am

    I always buy the naan at Target too. But our store rarely has the garlic ones. We but garlic oil chicken spinach and feta on ours. You should try it!

    PS Your photos are gorgeous!
    PPS Now I’m craving tomatoes.

    • Reply
      Ashley
      July 19, 2013 at 10:33 am

      Oh, that does sound good!
      PS Thank you!
      PPS You’re welcome : )

  • Reply
    Sara
    July 19, 2013 at 10:57 am

    Tomato Pie! I grew up in Northern VA and have lived in Hanover for the past 11 years, Tomato Pie is my adopted hometown treat, I have to make this every year now when the Hanover tomatoes are in. I grew up a farm girl with fresh vegetables from the garden all summer, but there really is something different about a Hanover Tomato!

  • Reply
    Julie
    July 19, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    This looks so simple and yummy! Need to try this!

  • Reply
    Shari
    July 19, 2013 at 6:22 pm

    Mmmm!!! Heading up to M’ville tomorrow to snag some (among other things), in fact. πŸ™‚

    Trader Joe’s also has awesome garlic na’an in their frozen department. It’s delish.

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    July 19, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    I grew up in Caroline and my Dad always made tomato sandwiches. We loooved Hanover tomatoes and now I miss them since moving to NC!

  • Reply
    Stacy
    July 20, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    I made this today with Hot House tomatoes (and the garlic naan, jarred pesto, and fresh mozzarella). My nephews LOVED it! Thanks for the recipe!

  • Reply
    Sarah Davenport
    July 22, 2013 at 9:26 am

    That recipe sounds so delicious! And your pictures are always so great!
    Just wanted to let you know that I shared it on the Strange’s Florist Facebook page ( https://www.facebook.com/StrangesFlorist) . We love that you posted about the tomato festival!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      July 22, 2013 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks so much! : )

  • Reply
    Jennifer
    July 22, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    Thanks for sharing! A girlfriend of mine gave us a bunch of tomatoes from her garden (she lives in wine country) and man are they delicious! I was looking for recipes that let the tomato be center stage—they’re too good not to!

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