When my daughter, Emily left for college and our household number dwindled to two, I tried to scale down the “serves” ratio in my cooking, which is what I like about these Tomatoes Provencal, you can essentially make as much or as little as you need.
It used to be that I’d make a recipe that “served 6”, and have enough for one dinner as well as leftovers for another meal. Less work for me, right? However, “serves 6” doesn’t work for just two of us because although Scott is fine with leftovers once, he’d prefer not to have the same dish resurrected a third or fourth time. And once a vegetable has been cooked and served — for him, it crosses the line to mushy (pronounced moo-she) – and therefore, inedible.
So, these roasted tomatoes are perfect for us because they make exactly two. Half for him, half for me. And, if we’re having company, I double or triple the servings for my guests. Don’t you love recipes that make sense like that?
As far as prep, it’s quick and simple. Slice and seed a tomato. Mince some fresh shallots and herbs. Zhuzsh a piece of bread in a mini food processor then combine the bread with the herb mixture. Toss the bread crumb mix with a little olive oil to coat.
Top the tomato halves with the herbed breadcrumbs and give them an extra drizzle of olive oil. Then it’s a quick roast in a hot oven. Tomatoes Provencal cook in about the same time that it takes to grill chicken breasts or a steak, so your timing should work out pretty close if that’s what you’re serving them with.
Roasting intensifies vegetable flavor while mellowing out any sharpness or acidity. And you know how the house smells warm and inviting when your making tomato sauce? It’s the same with these tomatoes.
- 2 large ripe tomatoes
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small shallot minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves chopped
- pinch red pepper flakes optional
- 1/4 cup parsley chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Slice tomato in half crosswise. Scoop seeds out of the tomatoes. Sprinkle the tomato halves half the salt and pepper.
- In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, shallot, thyme, red pepper flakes, parsley, breadcrumbs and the remainder of the salt and pepper. Stir to blend. Drizzle one tablespoon olive oil into the breadcrumb mixture while tossing to coat.
- Spoon the breadcrumb mixture over the tomatoes. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and bake for 15-18 minutes or until crumbs are golden and tomato is slightly softened, but still holding its shape. Serve.
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