Saturday, August 22, 2009


I have been reading about slow roasted tomatoes for years and I don't know why it took me so long to jump on the train with all the cool kids, but I am here now! Let me tell you, these things are a revelation. Everything good about tomatoes is magnified in the slow roasting approach, turning a perfectly serviceable Roma into a thing of brilliance. Think of the depth of flavor in a good quality tomato paste, but sweeter, and with the added fragrance of your favorite olive oil and a little magic thrown in. I'm told you can use these with pasta, salads, eggs, and as appetizers but so far I find that eating them as is works pretty well, too.

If you start googling recipes, you'll find that the directions are all over the map. Use cherry tomatoes. No--paste tomatoes. Place skin side up. No--skin side down. Roast for anywhere from 3 to 12 hours at temperatures ranging from 175 to 300 degrees. Herbs and garlic cloves are essential for seasoning. Or you can skip those. My guess is that all of these approaches work just fine.

What I did was drizzle two sheet pans with a lovely, fragrant olive oil and then slice a whole bunch of Roma tomatoes lengthwise, cutting out the little stem thingy as I went along. I rubbed the cut side of each tomato half in the olive oil, flipped it over, and lined it up with all the others until the pan was full. I gave each pan a light sprinkle of kosher salt and popped them in the oven at 175 degrees and came back 12 hours later. Once cool, I peeled the skins off each tomato half and then popped them into freezer bags to save for winter although I confess I ate more than a few during that process.

I hope I've convinced you that you need to go make these immediately. As in, RIGHT NOW. Seriously. GO. And then come back and tell me all about it.

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Miriam said...

OK, you know how Randi makes those beautiful calendars with her flowers ... you need to do something with the beautiful pictures of the food you prepare. I don't know how you get the colors to be so vibrant and true, but I drool every time I see one of your photos!

Magpie Ima said...

Thanks so much, Miriam. There are lots of things I don't take pictures of because they aren't so great to look at. These tomato pictures were just point and shoot with a little focus thrown in. No editing to punch up the color--that's just how they are. I'm glad I can make you drool :-)

Chris said...

I agree with Miriam about your photos!

I've been making roasted tomato sauce this summer...roasting my little Stupice tomatoes, which don't have much flavor, with shallots or onions and unpeeled garlic cloves, with a bit of olive oil and sprigs of thyme, at 250 for six hours. I happen to have four glass 9x12 casserole dishes (I don't know how that happened) and use those for roasting. I deglaze them afterward with just a bit of water, which I add back to the roasted veggies and then can the whole shebang...add a tbsp of lemon juice to each pint. I've been enjoying the results with my eggs in the morning...delicious schmeared on buttered toast with egg yolk. Oi, it's good stuff.

Ali said...

Where'd you get your tomatoes?

Alisa@Foodista said...

Oh they look gorgeous!I havent gone around to making them but I will now! I'd love to guide our readers to your site if you won't mind.Just add your choice of foodista widget to this post and it's all set, Thanks!