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Tomato Basil Bake

Absolutely nothing epitomizes Mississippi summer more than fresh tomatoes. Honestly, I haunt the local farmer's market at the beginning of June every summer waiting on their arrival. The funny thing is I hated tomatoes until I was an adult. Now, they are my favorite. This flavorful dish will make a great side for any special dinner. Your friends and family will love it.

Tomato Basil Bake:

Ingredients: 1 stick and 4 tablespoons of butter, divided 1 whole onion, diced 3 cups fresh tomatoes, chopped (3 cans of canned diced tomatoes may be substituted.)

1 cup grated parmesan 1/3 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup fresh basil, cut into ribbons 1 teaspoon garlic powder 2 1/2 sleeves of Ritz crackers Salt and pepper

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet or Dutch oven, cook the onions in the stick of butter until translucent. Add the tomatoes, basil, garlic powder and brown sugar. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Crush 1 1/2 sleeves of the crackers and add them to the tomato mixture. Stir in the parmesan, salt and pepper. Transfer to an 8 1/2 X 11 casserole dish. In a separate bowl, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Combine with 1 sleeve of Ritz crackers coarsely broken, but not crushed. Top the tomato mixture with the crackers. Bake for 30 minutes until thoroughly heated and cracker topping is nicely toasted.

FNPP Tomato Basil Bake
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