Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Grilled Tomatoes

As the summer approaches down here in the land of Oz, you may notice something about this food blog. What may you notice, pray tell? You just might notice a lot of recipes using tomatoes.

Why tomatoes? Well, we have 9 tomato(e) plants growing in pots on the bricked patio overlooking the pool. It gets nice and roasty toasty warm there, loads of daylight too, and I give 'em plenty of water and fertilizer (cow poop; in fact they started growing in a mix of half potting soil and half cow manure --makes the plants smell really good).

One of the plants is a truss tomato(e) and that sucker's first flush is gonna be 20 to 30 tomatoes! Mmmmmmmmmm... Last year we got over 100 from just 3 plants (no trusses) so this year I'd be expecting over 300.

That's a lot of tomatoes.




I still have a few jars of semi-sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil and fresh basil from last season. I also still have a jar of the end of season green tomatoes that I pickled.

I think we'll be eating a lot of tomatoes over the next 8 months :)

OT 95 F in the shade Friday... A little bit warm for middle of spring...

The sauce for this is the same as I use for my fish recipe that everyone down here loves, or at least those who've tried it.

The sauce is basically half olive oil and half lemon juice (or lime juice), a bit of salt, some ground white pepper, and some tarragon. Whisk the heck out of it and a nice emulsion forms.

The other day I was grilling up some basa with the above marinade, and I realised I had made too much marinade. I then noticed that we had 3 big, fresh, juicy tomatoes just sitting there on the kitchen table begging to be eaten.

Hmmmmm, thought I... perhaps I can thick slice them and grill them and drizzle the excess marinade on them? Oh, wait a sec! How's abouts I cut em in half and let the sauce soak into them before grilling? Yeah, that'll work!

They were a HIT! I mean a huge hit! The cool thing is that they kinda make there own little bowls of tomatoey goodness. Gobble, smack, slurp!

Here the recipe:

Whut Yoo Knead:
3 tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice (or half lemon/half lime juice)
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp ground white pepper (or black, no worries)
1 to 2 tsp dried tarragon leaves

Whut Yoo Doo:

Toss everything except the tomatoes in a bowl. Then whisk like crazy. The sauce will form an emulsion. Very very very tasty.

Slice each tomato(e) in half. Latitudinally, not longitudinally (that means if the stem is the north pole, then slice along the equator). Put the halved tomatoes on a plate with the cut side UP. Spoon the sauce over each half (that'd be six halves) and let them sit for an hour (while you go prepare whatever else you are having for dinner).

Crank up your grill (I have a six burner gas barbie) to high. Let the grill get really hot, then turn off the gas. Place the tomato(e) halves on the grill with the cut side DOWN. Close the lid.

In about 10 to 15 mins, open the lid, and plate them suckers up! Serve them with the cut side UP, and they'll each become their own little bowl of tomatoey goodness.


I'm sure you can do the same thing under a broiler (on the lowest temp possible) in the kitchen. I wouldn't suggest making them in an oven cus I think they'd soften up way too much. But hey, you can always try! But if you have a gas grill, it's easily done. Charcoal, no worries; just move the coals to one side after getting the part of the grill where you are putting the tomatoes nice and really hot.

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