The Recipe: Simple roasted Roma tomatoes, using time and temperature to turn so-so supermarket tomatoes into something truly special – or a way to use up a glut of late-summer Roma tomatoes from the garden. Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real.
The Conversation: My stake in Ferguson.
"... out of this world ... tomato candy!!!" ~ Marjorie
Remember when the Crayola people put out the first “multi-cultural” crayons? All eight colors lined up in the box: white to black, with tan, apricot and peach on the lighter side, sepia, mahogany and burnt sienna on the darker side.
If only real life were as neat and tidy as a crayon box. But it’s not.
If only a box of crayons could represent the rainbow of world skin tones. But it can’t.
Word is that “everyone” is talking about Ferguson, at work, at home, over meals and around TVs. We too are gripped by the news, watching and reading many hours each day since Mike Brown’s death on August 9th, horrified by the violence from both police and citizens, stunned to watch our city in a tear-gas and looting spotlight.
Word is that white Americans – the “peach” and “apricot” people like me – are largely silent in public places, not trusting our words, not wanting to incite further rancor from black Americans – the “sepia” people.
But America is my country and St. Louis is my town and much closer to home, my beloved nephew Matthew, born with pretty brown skin and adopted as a newborn, identifies as African-American and at age 24, by virtue of demographics alone, is an “at risk young black man”.
So like every other American, I have a stake in Ferguson. And if I’m not talking? It’s because I’m listening.
Here's one quick way to use your Roasted Roma Tomatoes, it's an excellent vegetable dip. I also like it spread on a cracker or thin bread slice, topped with another piece of tomato.
ROASTED ROMA TOMATO DIP In a mini food processor, mix 4 pieces of Roasted Roma Tomato, 1/4 cup cottage cheese, a 1" square of feta, a pinch of sugar, scraping the sides as needed. Add buttermilk to thin to the right consistency.
ROASTED ROMA TOMATOES
Time to table: 4 hours
Makes about 1-1/2 cups roasted tomatoes / about 32 pieces
- 1 pound (454g) Roma tomatoes (about 8 tomatoes)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt & pepper to taste
Heat oven to 225F/100C.
Lengthwise, cut tomatoes into quarters. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Arrange cut-side up on a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil or parchment, otherwise, yikes, the acidic tomato will dull the shiny surface.
Roast for about 3 hours, checking every 15 minutes or so after 2 hours. The tomatoes should be firm and slightly dry, if a little char occurs on the tips, all the better!
Refrigerate tomatoes and tomato juices until ready to serve. Keeps several days.
ALANNA's TIPS I usually roast a trayful of tomatoes at a time, that's about 30 ounces/850g. They haven't gone to waste yet! With the first cut, I like to cut beside, not through the center, of the tomato's stem end, then remove a tiny sliver where the stem once was. Just-picked Roma tomatoes from the garden may take longer to roast, I suspect it's the extra moisture. Back in 2005, I published my recipe for Slow-Roasted Tomatoes, wonderful for cooking, adding an amazing deep'n'dark tomato flavor to winter dishes. In contrast, Roasted Roma Tomatoes are meant to be eaten as they are, I love them in salads, atop a smear of hummus, tucked into omelets.
Roasted Roma Tomato Dip
RECIPE HIGHLIGHT Here's one great way to use your Roasted Roma Tomatoes, Roasted Roma Tomato Dip. It's great for a vegetable dip, also to smear on a cracker or slice of bread with a piece of tomato on top. Lovely next to a bowl of soup or a quick appetizer!
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