The first westerners to encounter tomatoes were Spanish conquistadors in Mexico.
Tomatoes — or 'love apples' as they were known — were cultivated in Spain from the 16th century for their aphrodisiac properties. People in France and Britain did not accept them until much later.
The recipe for 'Tomatoes au gratin' shown on this page is from a recipe book compiled for households in Aberdeen and London.
Many of the recipes are taken from 'The Queen' magazine of 1881-1886, probably as novelty dishes.
Anonymous recipe book, 1881-1886, for households in Aberdeen and London. [Library reference: Acc.11296]