Tasty Winter Tomatoes?

The most interesting thing about starting a new semester is learning about the unique personalities of our new chefs.  Our newest ones seem to have a hate on for freshly ground pepper topped on everything (it overpowers all the other flavours), Winterlicious, and the fact that Toronto has very little culinary innovation (the trend towards fancy tacos, hamburgers and pulled pork is appalling to them).

They all tend to agree though, that we simply can’t get quality tasting ingredients in the winter in Canada.  Tomatoes in January?  Tastes like…nothing.  But with a few simple ingredients, bland tomatoes can taste pretty remarkable.  This is what we made in last week’s culinary lab: oven-roasted tomatoes with herbs.   It’s kind of shocking how different they can taste!  They are great on their own, or you can add them to pasta or whatever you feel like!

(I am currently borrowing my brother’s 20mm lens for my new Lumix GF3 camera, which I love!  This 20mm lens makes everything look a little more dreamy and delicious!)

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Ingredients (no exact amounts here…you can adjust to what makes sense to you)

  • Fresh plum or roma tomatoes 
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Garlic
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Parsley
  • Olive oil

Methods

  1. Preheat oven to 375F
  2. Cut tomatoes in half and place them (cut side up) on a foil or parchment lined baking tray
  3. Season with a bit of salt and a pinch of sugar (no black pepper here – my current chef hates it…but it can certainly be added)
  4. Cut very thin slices of garlic and place on top of the tomatoes
  5. Cut or rip a small sprig of fresh oregano, thyme and parsley and lay them on top of the tomato (I find it hard to keep so many different types of fresh herbs around, so I just used fresh parsley which I had on hand, and lightly sprinkled dried thyme and parsley)
  6. Drizzle with olive oil on top
  7. Place in the oven and roast for about 1 hour
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