Neapolitan Tomato Halves

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Four


Appears in

Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

By Craig Claiborne

Published 1969

  • About

This cold appetizer, served as a first course, is admirably suited to an antipasto that might also include cold tuna with lemon wedges, pimientos, flat anchovies, black olives, hot Italian green peppers, sliced salami, and the like.


  • 4 firm-fleshed but ripe tomatoes
  • 1 or 2 cloves garlic
  • Oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary or ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil


  1. The tomatoes for this recipe should not be peeled. Pare into and around the stem end and discard the core. Slice each tomato in half.

  2. Cut the garlic lengthwise into very thin slivers. Make several small gashes into the cut portions of the tomatoes and stash each gash with a sliver of garlic.

  3. Oil a baking dish and arrange the tomatoes on it. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt and pepper. Liberally sprinkle the tomatoes with oil, then sprinkle with rosemary. Place them under a medium broiler flame and let them cook gently until hot and bubbling and the edges of the tomatoes start to burn. Remove the baking dish and let it stand until the tomatoes are cold. Sprinkle the tomatoes with basil and serve cold.