WGN Entertainment Reporter Dean Richards has recipes for all the tomatoes growing in your garden.

Open-Faced Tomato Sandwiches with Creamy Cucumber Spread


  • 1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cucumbers, seeds removed, diced (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, plus more for serving
  • 6 Texas Toast slices or other thick white bread slices, toasted
  • 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 lb. assorted fresh tomatoes (about 3 large), cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Thinly sliced chives


Stir together cream cheese, cucumbers, red onion, dill, mint, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl until well combined.

Spread about 1/4 cup of the cucumber-cream cheese mixture onto each slice of the toasted bread.

Top each with 2 to 3 tomato slices, and drizzle each with 1 teaspoon olive oil.

Sprinkle tomatoes with chives, salt, and pepper. Serve immediately.

Fresh Tomato-Basil Calzone


  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, cubed
  • 1 package refrigerated pizza dough
  • (optional)  dipping sauces, i.e. ranch, marinara, etc


Preheat oven to 425F degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat.

Chop basil roughly. Core tomatoes and slice to 1/4-inch thickness.

Lay out your pizza crust onto a floured surface, cut it into 4 even quarters

Evenly distribute tomato slices, cheese and basil into the 4 centers of the pizza crust. Fold dough together and seal the ends with your fingers.

Place onto prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Mini-Mozzarella, Cherry Tomato, Basil Salad


  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1 pound ciliegine mozzarella (cherry-size mozzarella balls)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (glaze, regular, white, or golden)


Slice cherry tomatoes and mozzarella balls in half.   Set aside.  

Combine oil and basil in a bowl. Add the mozzarella and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and let marinate at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.

Add tomatoes and vinegar to the mozzarella and toss to combine. Season to taste with more salt and pepper if desired, and serve immediately.

Marinate at room temperature as storing it in the fridge will cause the mozzarella to firm up.

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