When fragrant, vine-ripe tomatoes are in season, the time is right for caprese skewers with prosciutto, gazpacho and sliced tomatoes on grilled bread.

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The gardeners among us are soon to be rich in ripe tomatoes. Here are a few of our favorite right-off-the-vine summer treats.

Caprese skewers with prosciutto

Marinate bocconcini (small mozzarella balls) in olive oil, crushed garlic, red pepper flakes and a splash of lemon juice for half an hour. Alternate the balls on 4-inch skewers with cherry tomatoes, basil leaves and bites of prosciutto. Serve at room temperature.

Gazpacho

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In a blender, combine 6-8 medium-sized tomatoes, ½ green pepper, ½ onion, ½ seeded cucumber, 3 cloves garlic, a sprig each of fresh basil and dill, 1 cup tomato juice, ¼ cup red wine vinegar, ¼ cup olive oil, a dash of hot sauce, salt and pepper. Blend lightly (do not puree) and chill. Serve topped with crumbled hard-boiled egg or a dollop of sour cream.

Sliced tomatoes

Layer sliced tomatoes on grilled bread. Drizzle with good olive oil, maldon salt and fresh cracked pepper. (To serve “a la grandma,” top with a blob of mayonnaise.)

Seattle Times staff