Jason Sandeman, a chef and writer who produces the Well Done Chef blog, offered to write an occasional guest column, including step-by-step recipes for preparing real food. Below is Jason’s latest guest post. (You can read his previous guest column here.)
Fall is around the corner, and your tomato vine is bursting with ruby red colored tomatoes. In fact, if you are like me, you have so many that you cannot possibly use them all. Your friends and family shy away from you around this time of year, afraid if they shake your hand, they’ll arrive home and find tomatoes in their pockets. You have a real problem on your hands, and you need to act before the fruit flies take up residence.
Below is a simple recipe that you can follow to take those tomatoes to the next level. You can also store them for a long while, up to 6 months in the freezer. See after the recipe for some tips on using this creation.
Oven Roasted Tomatoes
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: up to 2 hours
Makes 60 half tomatoes, about 1 plastic container full
- 30 Roma tomatoes (I prefer these, but you can substitute whatever you are growing on your vine.)
- Extra-Virgin olive oil to coat
- 10 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 bunch of thyme
- to taste salt
- to taste pepper
1 cookie pan with sides at least 1/2 inch deep
Pre-heat the oven to 200°C (400°F).
Cut tomatoes in half lengthwise, keeping the core intact.
Toss in a large bowl with the extra-virgin olive oil, garlic cloves, salt and pepper.
Line the tomatoes cut-side down on the cookie sheet; nestle the garlic cloves and thyme sprigs in between rows of tomatoes. Drizzle remaining olive oil over the tomatoes.
Roast in the oven for 15 minutes, until the skins blister.
Remove from the oven, peel off skins. (I save them for veal stock, but you can throw them away if you like.) Pour off the juice into a container; reserve.*
Lower the temperature of the oven to 135°C (275°F).
Place the tomatoes back into the oven and roast for 20 minutes.
Remove tray from the oven; pour off juices into container, place the tomatoes back into the oven.
Repeat as necessary, until the tomatoes are not giving off any juices, and are almost dry.
Remove from oven; cool. Pick out the garlic cloves and thyme. Reserve the roasted garlic for another use.
Pack tomatoes into a container with a little extra-virgin olive oil and refrigerate. The tomatoes will keep up to 2 weeks refrigerated, or up to 6 months frozen.
*Note: The juices you save would make a great base for a tomato vinaigrette. Perhaps that is another post?
Now, for the bonus part. Take an onion, fry until soft, add 10 or so oven roasted tomatoes. Add 500 mL (2 cups) of the chicken stock in my previous guest post. Chop some fresh oregano or basil,and toss it in the pot. Blend the mixture until smooth with a hand blender. Voila! Near-instant soup. Let’s see franken foods create that!