“The difference between a bland tomato and a great one is immense, much like the difference between a standard, sliced white bread and a crusty, aromatic sourdough.” Yotam Ottolenghi
I always look forward to fall and all its splendour. But, hélas, it also signals the end of tomato season. In my garden, I have some tomatoes that are struggling to ripen with the cooler temperatures upon us and many that have become mealy and are just not that good. Slow cooking these end of season, less than perfect tomatoes, can rescue them and bring out some of their sweetness and improve their texture. Adding spices boasts their flavor and makes them fragrant additions to autumnal soups, braises and stews. When the garden gives you mealy tomatoes…..make slow-roasted spiced tomatoes!
To slow-roast them, cut the tomatoes in quarters or halves depending on size. For every pound of tomatoes, toss with:
- 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Spread the seasoned tomatoes on a lined baking sheet in a single layer. Bake in a 275 F degree oven for 2 hours. You will end up with caramelized, gently spiced tomatoes to use in various recipes and fill your kitchen up with the most heavenly aroma! Be sure to scrape up any cooking juices. I puréed mine with zucchini and onions into a creamy all vegetable soup. So good!