Too Many Cherry Tomatoes?

The brightest flavors in the home vegetable garden are often from cherry tomatoes. They are the perfect blend of acid and sweet, a burst of juice and a mouthful of fruit. I eat them like candy and toss them in salads, but at some point during the summer, I can’t keep up, and I am done with them. But I don’t want to waste a one. That’s when I cook them and make Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce.

Very little preparation is required. Wash and remove the stems. If you have a few extra plum tomatoes, quarter them. You can chop and onion, or peel a few cloves of garlic. Or not. Put all onto a baking sheet. This is my favorite heavy pan. It’s dark patina is from years of use with olive oil.

Pour on a glug of good olive oil –  enough to coat the bottom of the pan and make the vegetables glisten. Sprinkle on a teaspoon or two of balsamic vinegar. Dust on sea salt – don’t use cheap table salt. The salt flavor matters. Kosher salt will do. I have Sicilian Sea Salt that I brought back from Rome that I used for this. Delicious. My stash is almost gone. You can buy good salt at many markets and gourmet grocers. I’d like to go back to Rome, though to get mine!

Shake the pan so that the vegetables are evenly coated with the oil, vinegar and salt. Put it into a 300 degree F. oven. Bake for an hour, or longer. The tomatoes will burst and shrink and their flavors will concentrate.

You could put it through a food mill to get rid of the seeds and skins and have a concentrated tomato sauce. Or, use as is. Toss with cheese tortellini. I used it to top grilled swordfish steaks. Easy. Pure summer.


  1. I like tomatoes any way I can get them. One summer I ate so many I developed a canker. It’s a shame to think that in the dead of winter, we’ll be reduced to eating cardboard tasting tomatoes. Although the little grape tomatoes can sometimes be tasty.

    • Yes! I’ve got some in my freezer now. I also made a batch yesterday, this time with a leek, one summer squash, and basil. I’m going to run it through my food mill to make a thick tomatoey puree. I’ll freeze that, too.

  2. Excellent! thanks for sharing- I’m off to the tomato patch and kitchen now! It’s a miracle we have ANY ripe tomatoes this year in the Pacific NW, so I don’t want to waste a single one!

  3. Have you ever thought about a roasted tomato omelet? Looking at your picture, I can just imagine one.

    • I’ve done it! Though you have to be careful that the tomatoes aren’t watery. Even easier is a cheese omelet with the roasted tomatoes on top.

  4. Boy, that sounds good! I love this time of year! I froze two bags (qt) of tomato sauce a couple days ago, 5 bags of butternut squash yesterday and I made some tomato basil soup tonight for supper! Now that my hens are here and blessing our family with wonderful eggs an omlete sounds like a great idea!