Roasted Herbes de Proven¸e Tomatoes
tomatoes per person. (And some persons will probably want more, so
consider making extra.)
Serve these with just about anything! They are especially
delicious with any kind of egg dish, or scrambled tofu or
About herbes de Provençe... thyme, fennel, oregano or
marjoram, summer savory, and, delight of delights, lavender. You
should be able to find this heavenly mixture in the spice
department of your favorite grocery store or "cuisine shop." Herbs
lose their intensity and fade out over time, with exposure to heat
and light. Solution: Keep them in the freezer.
Use small tomatoes (1 1/2 to 2 ounces each). They'll absorb more
flavor and be easier to eat than larger ones.
The oven might get smoky during roasting. You can
lessen this effect by basting out the juices a few times while the
tomatoes are in the oven. This will also serve to concentrate the
rich tomato flavor even more.
1 pound plum (Roma) tomatoes (about 10 small ones)
1 to 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Herbes de Provençe (up to 1 tablespoon)
Freshly ground black pepper
Lavender flowers for garnish (optional)
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a
baking tray with foil. Brush with about 1 tablespoon olive
- Thinly slice off the stem ends of the tomatoes, then hold each
tomato over a sink and squeeze out the seeds through the sliced
opening. Cut the tomatoes in half lengthwise, and place them cut
side-up on the foil.
- Roast the tomatoes in the center of the oven for about 20 to 30
minutes, or until they reduce in volume by about 1/3, and the tops
look nicely "done." Remove the tray from the oven, and drizzle the
tomatoes with a little more olive oil while they rest, still hot,
on the tray. Sprinkle each with about 1/8 teaspoon herbes de
Provençe. After they cool for about 10 minutes, sprinkle them
lightly with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve
warm or at room temperature.
For the deepest flavor, put the tray back into the just-turned-off
oven after adding the herbes de Provençe, and leave it in
there for another 30 minutes or so. The tomatoes will become
chewier and the flavor will continue to intensify. The yield will
be slightly lower in that the tomatoes will shrink.