If you’ve never tried slow-roasting tomatoes, now is your perfect opportunity. Summer’s ripe heirlooms and Early Girls are at their sweetest, and while they are flawless eaten fresh with a sprinkle of sea salt and olive oil, roasting adds an entirely new dimension of flavor.
Roasting tomatoes concentrates their sweetness, caramelizing the natural sugars and lending a deep richness to the end result. Prep time is minimal but the tomatoes take a bit of time in the oven, so plan to roast them when you have a few hours of down time at home. You’ll be rewarded with a prized ingredient for your next dish — or, if you’re like us, a snack that’s hard to beat just as is.
8 to 10 plum or 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise
About 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
About 1 tsp. sugar
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
Sea salt and ground pepper
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet. Arrange tomatoes, cut side up, on prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle evenly with sugar, garlic and generous amounts of salt and pepper. Roast tomatoes until deep red and wrinkled, 2 to 2 1/2 hours for medium or plum tomatoes and 1 hour for cherry tomatoes.
Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 4 to 6.
If you can resist the roasted tomatoes right out of the oven, try them in one of these versatile dishes: