How Nigella Lawson Deals With Crappy Tomatoes

Photo: Claire Lower

Tomatoes are a fickle bunch. They all look so good, but even the cherry tomatoes — which I can usually count upon to be at least somewhat flavorful — can be dull and lacklustre from time to time.

Luckily, Nigella Lawson (who I have loved and cherished since I received a copy of “How to Be a Domestic Goddess” for Christmas as a teen), has a solution to this extremely vexing issue.

Turn Sad Winter Tomatoes Into Delicious Roasted Salsa

At least once a year I buy the first crop of supermarket tomatoes that look even vaguely ripe. They are never anything but a total letdown, which means I end up regretting my purchase — and resenting those subpar tomatoes for suckering me in.

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Just as with A.A. Newton’s roasted salsa, the answer is heat, only this heat is much gentler, and the method is infinitely more hands-off.

You’ll have to turn on an oven, but only long enough for it to get hot (230C). Next, take your disappointing, dull-arse tomatoes, slice ‘em in half, sprinkle on some salt and sugar (and maybe a little thyme), then shut the oven off, and pop the tomatoes in there for an overnight stay, taking care not to open the oven, not even for a peek.

The gentle, ambient heat gives the tomatoes a makeover, transforming them from weak and watery into sweet and bright (and still very juicy). They’re great in salads, superb with a simple pasta, and very decent on a sandwich.

Moonblush Tomatoes | Nigella’s Recipes


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