This month's theme for Blogger CLUE is red which is perfectly perfect given that Valentine's Day is around the corner. And while I'm not a fan of gaudy red rose bouquets from the grocery store and cherub shaped mylar balloons, I do love me some cookies with sparkly red sugar and sponge cake with red frosting. Sadly, my jeans beg to differ.
So when I went to my blog buddy Anna's blog, Anna Dishes, I was on the hunt for something red and non-calorific. Until I happened upon her Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes. All resolve flew out the window and I knew it'd be worth it to buy a whole new (much larger) wardrobe after eating an entire dozen cupcakes. Heck, you need to be following Anna's blog for these cupcakes alone!
And even though my brain was chanting, "cake, cake, cake," I forged on in search of other less catastrophic red items. Luckily, I happened upon these fantastic looking roasted tomatoes. And it felt a bit like a sign because a few months ago, I'd bookmarked a recipe for roasted tomatoes from Orangette but had yet to make them them.
Now before we go any further, I have to confess that tomatoes kind of weird me out. They're just so slimy and seedy. For the life of me, I cannot understand the fascination with eating a raw tomato. I don't care if they're heirloom. Don't matter if fresh mozzarella and basil are involved. And no, "tomato candy" is not a thing. Have you HAD real candy?!? But roasted tomatoes? Now that sounded interesting. Not candy interesting mind you, but interesting nonetheless.
And so, I embarked on a quest for roasted tomatoes. For the record, this is the simplest recipe you can ever make. Heck, it's not even a recipe so much as a technique. Cut tomatoes in half, throw on some unpeeled garlic cloves, cover with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast 'em low and slow until the tomatoes lose their mushy, watery ways and develop a deep and concentrated flavor.
And oh, the possibilities! Since my original, brave foray in to the realm of roasted tomatoes, I've discovered numerous other uses. I really like to slice 'em up and toss them with hot spaghetti, crushed red peppers, and olive oil for a quick and fancy-feeling dinner. I've also served them with toasted garlic rounds as a dinner party appetizer and they disappeared so quickly, I wondered if I'd forgotten to set them out.
So there ya go! As the day of love, last minute Hallmark cards, and cardboard boxes filled with questionable drugstore chocolates approaches, you owe it to yourself to ask, aren't roasted tomatoes a better idea? The answer? Yes. Always yes.
2 pounds Roma tomatoes
5 cloves garlic, unpeeled
Salt and Pepper
Heat oven to 250 degrees. Slice tomatoes in half. Scoop out the seeds and discard if you're like me and weird about having seeds. If you're normal, you can leave the seeds in. I'm told that when roasted, the seeds are quite mellow and add a lot of "meat" to the final product. Place the halved tomatoes face up on a baking tray. Add unpeeled garlic cloves to tray. Cover with olive oil. You don't need to drench the tomatoes with olive oil but want to add enough so the tomatoes don't dry out. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bake for 2 hours and check on tomatoes. They should start looking a bit wrinkly. Bake for another 1-2 hours. You want to roast the tomatoes but not dry them out so much that they're leathery. Remove tray from oven and cool. Remove peels roasted garlic. Store tomatoes, garlic, and oil in a covered jar in the refrigerator.
Can't get enough CLUE? Follow along with other CLUE bloggers below:
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- Cherry Almond Coconut Bars by Jean from Lemons and Anchovies
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- Garlicky Roasted Tomatoes by Azmina from Lawyer Loves Lunch
- Love Potion #9 w/ Raspberry Chambord Ice Cubes by Christy from Confessions of a Culinary Diva
- Madam Wong's Pizza Rolls by Kelli from Kelli's Kitchen
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- Pomegranate-Lime Granita by Debra from Eliot's Eats
- Raspberry Amaretto Bundt Cake by Liz from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Raspberry-Strawberry Puff Pancake by Alice from A Mama, Baby and Shar-pei in the Kitchen
- Red-Hot Currant-Glazed Pork Chops by Stacy from Food Lust People Love
- Red Velvet Cupcakes by Lea Ann from Cooking on the Ranch
- Roasted Asparagus by Kim from Liv Life
- Strawberry Chia Jam w/ Chia Seed Pancakes by Heather from girlichef
- Strawberry Vanilla Scones by Christiane from Taking on Magazines
- Tomato Herb Compound Butter by Wendy from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Turkey Joes from annaDishes