Thursday, July 7, 2011

Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Second Impressions

If there was ever a recipe where I strongly advise you to immediately drop everything you are doing and make, this is it. Just do it. 3 hours from now you will thank me. Because these little slow roasted tomatoes are my new candy, my new craving. I used up a whole carton of grape tomatoes making these and had to exercise the utmost self control I could muster not to stuff them all in my mouth. So I suggest, when you make these, use cartons. Multiple. Because you will want to not only eat as is, but put in every meal you make, be it pasta, in a sandwich, salad, quiche, tart... there are really endless options.
And did I mention it was absolutely the easiest thing to make? Minimal prep, a little oil, a sprinkle of salt, maybe a few garlic cloves, which are optional, and pop in the oven on the lowest heat possible, so low you won't even notice the oven is on... which, perfect for summer! 3 hours later and you have possible the best way to eat a tomato, outside of just biting into juicy slices of a beautifully ripe red tomato from the farmers market, with just a sprinkle of salt, in August. Nothing can beat that. Of course I would suggest you use the freshest possible tomatoes, and those little cherries, grapes and even Roma's work great,  and are perfect as a small addition to a meal but you can go bigger too. I personally can't wait to try with some farmers market heirloom Brandywines or some delicious German Greens.
So just where did I get the idea for this? Well to be completely honest, and this is after laughing in my head every time I saw the magazine with her on the cover, it was from the May '11 issue of Bon Appetit. Yup, the one with Gwyneth Paltrow. An actress I've always seen as a bit grating, a little too opinionated, definitely not someone I'd want to be friends with in real life. And yet, everything she says about cooking and family, even her cooking tips (keep it simple, clean as you go, adapt something you've had a good experience with, anchovies!) are right up my alley. And although I don't have kids at this point, she just became my celebrity Mom-as-home-chef role model for when I do. How about that for second impressions? And honestly, sometimes I don't make the best first impressions myself- who is always "on" like that? So from here on out as my summer resolution I'm going to have a more open mind to people who may have initially rubbed me the wrong way.  Because sometime it takes multiple impressions to truly figure someone out. Which is all that I would ask for myself as well.

Slow Roasted Tomatoes
2-3 cartons of cherry, grape or Roma tomatoes- (slice Roma's in 1/2, leave grape or cherries whole or slice in 1/2)
Drizzle of olive oil
Sprinkle of salt (I used Maldon)
4-5 Garlic cloves- no need to unwrap, just as is with the skin on

1. Set oven to 200-225. Toss the tomatoes in a bowl with oil and salt and mix well. On a baking sheet lined with parchment or aluminum foil lay the tomatoes out, along with the garlic cloves in an even layer.

2. Bake for 2.5-3 hours. Use right away, store in a plastic bag for up to a week or refrigerate in a jar and cover with olive oil for longer.

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