Serves: Makes about 500g - Time:
The most beautiful box of tomatoes arrived from the Isle of Wight last week. During lockdown I might be starting to resemble Strewwelpeter (a book, I might add, which still puts the fear of god into me-these days parents would probably get reported to social services for subjecting children to the horrors) but I won’t compromise on ingredients and decent tomatoes mean everything. After making panzanella, a caprese salad and some pretty heroic tomato sandwiches –good bread, mayonnaise, sliced tomatoes and salt and pepper -I decided to confit the remaining tomatoes so they would last a little longer. One and a half kilos may seem a lot but they will shrink to almost nothing. I should have been able to fill another small kilner jar but there was an incident with my cat and one of the roasting tins.
- 1.5kg ripe tomatoes, halved
- 1 large head garlic, separated into unpeeled cloves
- 6 bay leaves
- 200ml extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon caster sugar
- About 12 sprigs fresh thyme
- Heat the oven to fan 110˚c, mark ¼. Line two roasting tins with non-stick parchment. Arrange the tomatoes in one layer in each tin. Scatter the unpeeled garlic over the tomatoes and put three bay leaves in each tin. Pour half the olive oil in one tin and the remainder in the other.
- Sprinkle the sugar over all the tomatoes. Scatter the thyme evenly in both tins. Season the tomatoes with salt and ground black pepper and roast in the oven for about 2 ½ hours until the tomatoes are shrunken but not dry. Turn the oven off and leave the tomatoes to cool inside.
- When everything is completely cold slip the skins off the garlic cloves. Transfer the tomatoes, peeled garlic, bay leaves and thyme into sterilised kilner jars. Keep in the fridge for up to one week.