Remember the vegetable crumble recipe I posted back in May? At the time I’m not sure I raved about it quite as much as I should have – it’s still one of my absolute favourite recipes of the whole year. Seriously out of this world! (alien crumble…?)
I knew it would be hard to top my original crumble, but I thought I’d bring the recipe back to life in a new incarnation. This time I went with one of my favourite flavour combinations: tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. They’re usually served together as a simple caprese salad, but I love using classic combinations in different ways, and salad isn’t my favourite thing in the world (even a salad that’s 33% cheese). So: cherry tomato crumble!
Let me tell you: caprese salad has nothing on this baby. How could adding a crumbly, oaty topping do anything other than improve it tenfold?! It was inevitable really. Plus, it’s barely harder to make than the salad version (okay… it’s definitely harder, but still not even remotely hard).
Start by roasting the cherry tomatoes with some onion – the tomatoes cook down to become really rich and sweet. You want to cook them so they’re just beginning to burst. You don’t need to add any sort of sauce, as the juicy tomatoes are perfectly moist on their own.
Then top the roasted tomatoes with some fresh mozzarella and basil, as well as the oaty crumble mixture. The melty mozzarella also adds to the sauciness of the dish, making everything nice and gooey. It’s a lovely contrast to the crunchy topping!
We had this cherry tomato crumble as a main dish with some salad and a nice slice of garlic bread to fit with the Italian-style flavours. However if you’d prefer, it would make a lovely side dish for an Italian banquet.
(as if I ever have banquets…)
- 750 g cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 large onion halved then thinly sliced
- 1/2 tbsp oil
- Black pepper
- 35 g butter
- 50 g plain flour
- 30 g rolled oats
- 30 g vegetarian parmesan-style cheese grated
- 2 tbsp fresh basil chopped
- 125 g fresh mozzarella sliced
Toss the cherry tomatoes and sliced onion in a small amount of oil, and season well. Lay out the vegetables in a baking dish (mine measured around 9 inches square), and roast at 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F) for 30 minutes, until the tomatoes are just beginning to split.
Meanwhile, prepare the crumble topping. Rub the butter and flour together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add the oats and grated parmesan, and mix to combine.
When the tomatoes are ready, add the fresh basil, and mix. Spread the tomatoes into a single layer, and top with the slices of mozzarella. Sprinkle over the crumble topping, and return to the oven for a further 25 minutes or so, until the crumble topping is crispy and golden brown.