These oven baked tomatoes will knock your socks off. What you’ll love about them is that you can get amazingly good tomato flavor in the middle of winter. You can even get amazingly good tomato flavor from tomatoes that have been refrigerated.
You do know that he should never refrigerate tomatoes, right? Any tomato that has been in the refrigerator tastes like cardboard. But fear not. This simple how-to will transform even the most mediocre tomato into something to be proud of.
My preference is to use simple Roma tomatoes for this recipe. You could use a fancy heirloom tomato, but I think those are better enjoyed fresh. Just get your everyday Roma tomatoes from the store, because this simple method is going to transform them into something magical.
The riper the tomato, the better your oven baked tomatoes will be. While I try and think ahead and make these with a plan, it’s also a great way to take some tomatoes that maybe have been sitting around almost too long, and rescue them from the refrigerator or wherever you have them.
Low and slow is the best way to go here. You can cook these a little warmer, at 350° degrees in a pinch, but they’ll start to brown on the bottom before they’re as dry as I like them. So my preference is about 300°F for 3 to 4 hours. It’s a happy medium between time commitment and a tasty result. They will be dry enough to be bursting with flavor but still retain some moisture.
If you like them drier and more intense, you can also do them overnight at 250° and get nearly perfectly dried tomatoes that are almost like sun-dried tomatoes.
My herb of choice is thyme, but you can also use oregano, marjoram, or maybe even some chopped chives. I also like to add garlic oil to these. If you’ve made our garlic confit, then you’ll know what I’m talking about. It’s so easy to make that you’ll get a tenfold return in flavor on your investment.
You can use these tomatoes in so many dishes. Put them in a sandwich, on top of pizza, as a garnish for lentils, for tomato soup, in a salad, or whatever else you can think of. Chop them up and spread on toast, blend them up for tomato jam. Make a tomato and olive tapenade. There are so many ways you can use them. I’m sure you will love these because they have so many uses and add so much flavor to any dish where tomatoes are appropriate.
- 3-5 pounds very ripe Roma tomatoes stems cored out and cut into quarters
- 1 cup good-quality extra-virgin olive oil or garlic oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 300°.
Place the cored and quartered tomatoes in a large stainless steel bowl.
Add olive oil, chopped herbs, and generously salt and pepper. Toss well with hands to completely coat every piece of tomato.
Place tomatoes skin side down on an 11 x 17 sheet pan. Place sheet pan in oven and allow to bake 4 to 6 hours, until tomatoes are shriveled.
If you wish to preserve them longer than a few days in the refrigerator, cover with extra virgin olive oil and store in a jar in the refrigerator.