My best-loved way to bring out the sweet intensity of tomatoes is to roast them. This method is one I only just discovered last summer. (I know…where have I been?!)
Roasted tomatoes are pure heaven. And I’m addicted.
It took awhile for our tomato plants to start producing this year, considering our crazy cold and wet spring. So we’ve only been enjoying tomatoes straight from the vine for a couple weeks here. I think September is trying to make up for April, May, and June, as the past couple weeks have been an absolute outdoor delight.
So, a bit delayed by Mother Nature, I offer you this bowl of summer yum…Roasted Tomato Tapenade. I took my go-to roasted tomatoes recipe, added some dark and delectable Kalamata olives, and revved it up a bit. Vroom! Vroom!
We savored this flavorful tapenade on crostini, accompanying grilled steaks. And atop grilled chicken breasts a couple nights later. If there had been any more left, I had imagined tossing it with pasta for a quick weeknight meal, or spreading it on a grilled sandwich. Its concentrated flavor would have made the ordinary extraordinary.
Obviously, the better the tomato, the better the flavor of the tapenade. However, there really is something magical about roasting tomatoes, and I’m confident that this dish could be successfully served in the dead of winter, too. But if you still have tomatoes basking in your garden’s warm September sunshine, I highly recommend getting on this right now. Vroom! Vroom!
- 2 lbs. small tomatoes, cut into 1'' pieces (Romas work great, or any other smaller sweet variety)
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 3 T. extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 T. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tsp. brown sugar
- 1/2 c. chopped Kalamata olives
- 1/4 tsp. hot pepper flakes
- 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh basil
Preheat oven to 450°. Cover a jelly roll pan or roasting pan with heavy duty foil for easy clean up.
Combine the cut tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and brown sugar right in your pan. Roast for about 25 minutes, or until the tomatoes slump and the juices are bubbling. Remove pan from the oven and set aside to cool a bit.
Once you can comfortably handle the tomatoes, place them on a cutting board and chop them a bit more finely. This can get a bit messy, so try to leave as much of the juice as you can in the pan – but don’t throw the juice!
Transfer tomatoes to a small bowl. Then add juice from the roasting pan, olives, hot pepper flakes, thyme, rosemary, and basil. Stir gently to fully combine. Store covered in a nonreactive container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
From a farmgirl's dabbles.