This time of year, if you are lucky enough to have a garden, your tomatoes are probably all ripening at once! It is difficult to use them all up if you just add them to salads.
Roasting tomatoes is a wonderful way to bring out their flavor and condense them, and it is really simple to do.
First cut them in half and put them on a flat baking dish, cut side up. Add a few peeled garlic cloves cut in half, as well as strips of fresh basil leaves. (I used a garlic press to grate some on top too) Drizzle it all with olive oil, salt & pepper and a few sprinkles of balsamic vinegar or lemon.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 30-40 minutes until soft and caramelized.
They smell so good when cooking in the oven….the mixture of garlic and basil fills the kitchen and it is pretty irresistible! Once the tomatoes are roasted they can be used for many dishes.
The easiest way to use them is to cook up a pot of pasta noodles. I boiled some penne until it was al dente and then tossed it with a little olive oil, salt & pepper. I also roasted some baby eggplant we had growing in the garden – (the same way as the tomatoes). I topped the pasta with some of the roasted tomatoes, the roasted baby eggplant and a little burrata cheese (which melted beautifully over the hot pasta). The final touch was fresh basil leaves and a few shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese on top.
This was a savory and delicious way to use garden tomatoes, and also a fresh, summery change from using a jar of marinara sauce.
The next day for lunch I topped some grilled sourdough bread with some of the burrata cheese again. I added some of the roasted tomatoes and put it in the toaster to warm it up lightly.
Roasting tomatoes really brings out the rich flavor, and with the fresh basil and cheese it all mingled very well together. This bruschetta was delicious!