Make the Most of Tomato Season Before It Goes Away
Run to the market and don’t stop until you hit tomatoes
End-of season tomatoes are always so precious that I tend to buy up roughly 30 more than I need for the average Israeli salad or BLT. I watch them ripen on the counter until suddenly they really, really need to be eaten, because they're too beautiful for me to throw away. That’s when I turn on the oven and grab a hunk of salty Parmesan.
Oven-roasted tomatoes are the a solution to overripe or less-than-perfect end of season tomatoes. They can be smeared over toast, plunked onto a breakfast salad (or perhaps a breakfast pasta, or breakfast pizza) folded into an omelet, or eaten straight from the baking sheet chased with bites of a fresh loaf of ciabatta.
To make a tray or two of Parmesan-roasted tomatoes, preheat the oven to 350ºF and cut up your tomatoes into vaguely bite-sized pieces (cherry and grape tomatoes can be sliced in half).
Place the tomatoes on a baking sheet and drizzle with a shower of olive oil—the exact amount needed will of course depend on how many tomatoes you’re planning to roast, so eyeball it. I know you can do this. Same goes for a good sprinkle of kosher salt and pepper. Considering you’ll be adding grated cheese to the tomatoes, consider going lighter on the salt that you typically would when roasting a vegetable. Again, I don’t know how many tomatoes you’re roasting, but stick to under a teaspoon of salt per each full baking sheet.
Toss the oiled and seasoned tomatoes around the baking sheet to make sure they’re coated and then place the tray in the oven. Bake for 40 minutes, then pull out the tray and turn the oven temperature up to 400ºF.
Sprinkle the tomatoes with grated or shredded Parmesan cheese (a real hunk of cheese will taste best, but if all you have is a container of pre-grated don’t feel the least bit weird and get sprinkling). The exact amount will once again depend on how many tomatoes you’re cooking, but a scant ¼ cup per full tray should be good.
Return the tray to the oven and bake for another 5-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and starting to brown.
Let the tomatoes cool fully, then store in the fridge for 5 days to a week, or in the freezer for a couple months.