I’ve lately found myself in the position that I’m now cooking for one – after a couple of months of living off a diet of booze, miso soup and any cake that was brought in to the office (which saw me subsequently becoming anaemic and submitting to any cold/sickness that reared its head), I’m now back forcing myself to actually bother to cook when I get in from work and to cook food that tastes great/puts nutrients in to my body.
Walking round the supermarket, I’m wracked by environmental concern as I look at prettily packaged tomatoes bursting out of the temperature controlled fresh produce isles in the middle of winter – however tomatoes are my weakness and I can JUST survive the mountain of guilt as I pluck the most overly packaged ones off the shelf and stash them in my basket, whilst furtively making sure none of my environmental charity colleagues are ready to jump out from the root vegetables and question my sustainable ethics. So yeah, that's why I'm posting this now and not in August.
I like to use the little plum cherry tomatoes, but you can use any type you fancy. If you’re arsed about that sort of thing or want to really impress those people you regret inviting round to dinner, then you can get a selection of sizes and colours. Or if you live near a poncy market and not in the provinces then get your hands on some heritage ones and harp on about it on Twitter so everyone knows what a fucking foodie you are.
For the above mentioned reasons, I’ve given you a recipe for one portion, but it’s pretty easy to scale up for as many people as you want – just make sure you use a bigger dish and make sure the tomatoes are all in one layer. This is a side dish portion, or will stir through pasta for one, if you want to make it the main event in a dish, I'd scale things up 50%.
Quick roasted tomatoes
Serves one – prep 2 mins – cook 30 mins
• Ten cherry tomatoes, halved
• 1 clove of garlic, finely sliced
• Pinch of salt
• Grind of black pepper
• 1/4 tsp of thyme – dried will do
• Cooking olive oil
1. Turn your oven to 180c (fan).
2. Wash and halve your tomatoes.
3. Place the tomatoes in an oven-proof dish – make sure you choose one that the tomatoes can fit in one layer in, but that doesn’t leave too much room around them. A small pyrex or ceramic dish can be picked up at Big Shop for a couple of quid and will come in handy for lots of lonely, one person meals in the future (cue small violin please...).
4. Lay your garlic slices on top of the tomatoes. Sprinkle over the salt, pepper and thyme and drizzle over a bit of olive oil – you don’t want to drown it, just a drizzle to stop the garlic burning.
5. Place in the oven for about thirty minutes – check after twenty to see how it’s fairing – ovens (especially old ones I don’t have the money or motivation to change) can be contrary beasts, so I can tell you 30 minutes and I know you’ll come back to me and gripe that it took 37.2 minutes, that's why I get you to check them. The tomatoes should be soft and just catching, but not burnt or hard.
6. Take out your tomatoes and have them as a nice side or stirred through pasta or however your creative brain/tastebuds direct you. If you’re lazy and want me to suggest a whole meal to you (and it’s a chance for some shameless self promotion), then eat these with slow cooked baked beans and sticky chipotle bourbon chicken. Oh and some steamed broccoli, because it stops you getting folate anaemia and I’m well up on that now.
Looks a bit minging, tastes a lot fab