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Oven Baked Tomatoes

March 11, 2008

A note to readers – I’m delighted to be blogging again! I had a false start with some technical difficulties and a lot to learn. I will be posting regularly, so use the RSS feed, email notification or bookmark the link. I look forward to reading your comments.

heirloom tomatoes

Even though summer is long gone I haven’t stopped wanting those great tomatoes that were available at the farmers market. I took my craving to the grocery store and found some oversized cherry tomatoes that looked like they would be good. When I took a bite I was disappointed; there was none of the sweetness that makes a tomato so good. Since the memory of those wonderful heirlooms was still in my mind I wanted to try and recapture that tomato flavor. I decided to roast them.

Tomatoes Ready to cook

I sliced them in half and placed them on a cookie sheet. Then I sprinkled a little salt and pepper and placed them in a 350º oven until they started to shrivel up and flatten out. It took nearly two hours before I discovered it was the right decision.

When I took them out of the oven they had started to brown and dry out. The heat of the oven had concentrated the flavors and caramelized the natural sugars creating a tomato that was almost like candy and just as addictive. I found myself popping them into my mouth savoring the taste while I waited for them to cool enough so I could place in the refrigerator and out of sight.

That night I used them to accompany lamb chops and roasted rosemary potatoes. The next day I chopped a few and placed them in my salad. Tomorrow I think I’ll combine them with smoked Gouda and black forest ham to make sandwiches. I keep thinking of different ways to use them and keep finding myself back at the grocery store buying tomatoes to to make more.

Plate roasted tomatoes

Oven Roasted Tomatoes

Tomatoes – buy enough tomatoes to fill a baking sheet – any kind will work, but keep in mind that the larger the tomato the longer it will take.

Baking sheet – I also use a Silpat sheet on the baking sheet to make clean up easier. You could use parchment paper or aluminum foil. If you want to use the pan alone brush a small amount of oil to help with clean up.

Salt and pepper

  • Preheat oven 350º
  • Slice the tomatoes in half. If they are large gently squeeze to drain off some of the juice and seeds.
  • Place the tomatoes on a cookie sheet
  • Season with salt and pepper
  • Place pan into the 350º oven
  • Check tomatoes to make certain they do not burn. If they start to darken before they are dried out lower the temperature. It should take about 2 hours but that varies on the size of the tomato and how much moisture they contain.
  • Note – Tomatoes do not need to be turned over.
  • Once cooked let them cool slightly before placing them in a container to store in the refrigerator.

Serve the tomatoes warm or cold they are good either way.

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