CL's first monthly recipe contest — You say tomato

  • You have to use the theme ingredient. It doesn't need to be the star, but it needs to be significant in the dish.

  • We keep it local, so you must live within 100 miles of our office.

  • It must be your recipe (or your great-grannie's). No stealing.

  • It needs to have step-by-step instructions, a list of ingredients, and measured amounts (as necessary).

  • We need to receive it on or before the final day of the month.

  • You need to give us permission to reprint it in our website and/or paper.

Your reward will be local fame, and possibly a little fortune. The top three recipes from each month (chosen by our entirely unscientific panel) receive prizes and will be featured prominently in the pages of CL. At the end of the year we'll have a special contest among the monthly winners to find the best recipes of the year, voted on by the readers, with more prizes and accolades.

Maybe you watch too much Food Network. Maybe you have a family specialty handed down for generations. Maybe you've never touched a pot and want to apply your crazy, uninformed genius to a new project. Whoever you are, all you have to ask yourself is one question: Do you have the chops to win?

It's heirloom tomato time here on the Gulf Coast of Florida, so what better way to inaugurate our new monthly recipe contest — and our fancy new Food Section — than with a tomato showdown? We want to know how you use these sweet winter treats, if only so we can shove it in the faces of our frigid northern brethren.

The rules for CL's Monthly Recipe Contest are simple:

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