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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

FIRST DAY OF FALL

FALL Tomatoes Warm My Heart! 

Yes, its hard to believe, but here we are.  The first day of fall.  With 90 degree weather on its way this weekend, I don't feel too bad, and true to course, there are all those yummy fall vegetables and fruits to look forward to.  Just a few;  artichokes, beets, carrots and chards, celery root, mustard greens, winter squashes, and then there are the fall and winter fruit to look forward to; persimmons, pears, apples, pomegranite and then citrus.

But let's not get ahead of ourselves.  Our local farm is stacked with fresh corn on the cob, tomatoes and peppers, and I say, let's enjoy them while we still have them.   A tomato salad drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper and fresh basil with a little balsamic for good measure is my version of heaven.  Or if you are really overloaded with tomatoes, oven roast them.  It cooks them down and they are easier to preserve this way.  Here is a recipe for doing just that!    Happy Cooking!
These beauties were slow cooked for about 2 hours.  They are ready for sandwiches or added to a nice  pasta dish.  


SLOW-ROASTED TOMATOES

Ingredients
About a dozen large, ripe tomatoes
2 Tbsp good olive oil
salt, pepper and sugar
enough olive oil to cover cooked tomatoes when placed in a jar
Method
Wash the tomatoes and cut into halves or into quarters, depending on the size.
Coat the tomatoes a little with olive oil.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper, as well as a tablespoon or so of sugar.  
Place the baking sheet in an oven that has been preheated to about 250-300 degrees (depending on how patient you are!).  Sit back, relax and wait for the house to start smelling glorious.
You will begin to see a difference after 2-3  hours - a little shrivelling.  Check them after about 7 hours and if using quartered tomatoes, flip them onto their other cut side. 
After 9-11 hours, depending on the temperature of your oven, they should be ready. The tomatoes should have shrunk to about half to a third of their original size, the skin should be puckered and should be able to be pinched off with relative ease. 
Remove from the oven when done.  Alanna and Kalyn both say to remove the skins while they are still warm, but I rather like having the skin on (plus it's less work for me!).  From there, you can either use them immediately, freeze them in batches to use throughout winter, or do what I did - put them in a glass jar, add a couple of garlic cloves, cover with olive oil and store them in the fridge while thinking about recipes in which to use them. Should you be slightly more serious about preserving them for longer, sterilise your glass jars before adding the tomatoes and oil and seal before storing in the pantry. 
Don't be put off by the long cooking time - these are seriously worth it.  The slow roasting intensifies the tomato flavour and the sprinkling of sugar gives a slightly caramelised flavour.  I have had them on pasta, on pizza and in sandwiches and they are fantastic in all three.  Or eaten straight from the jar as a snack. Not that I would do such a thing...!
Recipe by Cook Sister! with adustments by Tricia O'Brien

6 comments:

Sally said...

I'm so tomato-inspired. Yum. Autumn hugs to you, Trix!

roxan said...

Yum, I love slow roasted tomatoes. I put them on pizza once and it was heaven!

Tricia O'Brien said...

That is a delicious idea! Thanks! I can whip up a pizza in no time! yummy! Buon Appetito!

blackbookkitchendiaries said...

oh my these look so tempting:) thank you for sharing...great post!

Karen said...

Your tomatoes look wonderful! I love the flavor they get when they've been roasted so long. Yum!

Tricia O'Brien said...

Thanks Karen! Easy too! Add them to just about everything....even make a roasted Tomato soup out of them....