However, in this recipe, the tomatoes shrink considerably, because they're slowly baked so that they lose their moisture without losing their shape. I think this was probably one of the original benefits to this recipe; it meant that I could fit so many tomatoes in my fridge, thanks to the wonders of tupperware. I'd pour the liquids from the roasting dish into the container, too, and use it as a salad dressing. Then there was the day that I combined these tomatoes in a salad with nothing more than home-grown cucumber and toasted, crusty sourdough bread, and covered it in the tomato juice. I ate that salad at least twice a day for several weeks, it was that good. And it got rid of lots of tomatoes. I think that was probably also when I became addicted to olive oil. It was a really good summer.
Use good olive oil with this one, if only because you don't want to waste the amazing juices from the roasted tomatoes by saturating them in a mediocre oil. Red wine vinegar is my vinegar of choice here - it's not as overpowering or sweet as balsamic can be. Lighter vinegar lets the tomatoes shine through. Even if you're just going to eat these tomatoes as-is, make sure you've got some bread on hand so that you can mop up the juices. You won't regret it, I promise.
10 small tomatoes*
10 small tomatoes*
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
Slice the tomatoes in half and arrange in a single layer in a baking dish. Drizzle with vinegar, olive oil, and salt. Bake in a 160 degree C oven, for about half an hour, or until lightly browned. Turn off the oven, but leave the tomatoes in there to cool. This allows them to cook a little more, but really slowly, which intensifies the flavours. When the tomatoes are cool (or barely warm), use them in a salad, or just snack on them straight from the dish.
*If you have large tomatoes, just cut them into quarters or chunks. They might need to roast for a little longer. I've used all manner of tomatoes (Cherry tomatoes, heirloom varieties, Black Russian and Green Zebra...) and they all taste fantastic. Just make sure they're vine-ripened: if they don't have any flavour to begin with, then they're not going to develop any in the oven.