Tomato Confit is an amazing condiment, pasta sauce, or appetizer on toast. With a touch of rosemary, tomatoes are slowly roasted to perfection, and the result is like gold. Sweet and savory, aromatic and fresh, they'll enhance everything they touch!
When I had my own catering business, these tomatoes were ordered regularly -- most often to serve on toasted baguette slices as an appetizer.
It's lovely for casual entertaining, and just to have at the ready for all sorts of things. (See Serving Suggestions below.) I eat Tomato Confit right out of the jar. It's that good.
(I often suggest brands I love and use — these are only suggestions and this is not a sponsored post.)
- tomatoes - While starting with excellent tomatoes is the best, this recipe can actually make even off-season tomatoes taste amazing!
- rosemary - You'll know rosemary is good when you rub a few leaves between your fingers, and the aroma is obvious. The softer the leaves, the better.
- garlic - Look for firm heads of garlic without any soft spots or green shoots, which is an indication of old garlic. (Raw garlic cloves should be firm without any dark spots.)
- extra virgin olive oil - I like this one a lot.
- salt - I cook with Kosher salt. I prefer for a few reasons: its larger flake size, it's less refined and usually doesn't contain additives, and it does a great job enhancing the flavor of foods without making them taste salty.
- pepper - Preferably freshly ground.
(See recipe card below for quantities.)
How to Make Tomato Confit
- Make the marinade by mixing finely chopped rosemary with minced garlic and olive oil.
- Peel the tomatoes, slice them in half and seed them.
- To peel the tomatoes: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and set up a bowl of ice water. Core the tomatoes and slice an "X" on the bottom of each one -- trying only to cut through the skin and not into the tomato. - A few at a time, add the tomatoes to the boiling water and leave them only long enough for the skin to begin to pull away from the "X," about 30 seconds. Use a slotted spoon to add them to the ice water. When they're cool enough to handle, gently peel the skin off.
- Drizzle half of the oil mixture on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and place the halved tomatoes on top, round side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle the remaining marinade on top.
- Place in a 225°F oven for 5 hours. Turn the sheet pan and baste the tomatoes with the marinade about every hour or so.
This is what they will look like about halfway through the cooking process . . .
- Sprinkle with a bit more salt and pepper and cool to room temperature.
This is after five hours in the oven . . .
(More detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.)
Confit tomatoes are fresh tomatoes that are cooked very slowly at a very low temperature in olive oil.
This technique is a way of very, very slowly bringing the natural sugars in the tomatoes to the surface, thereby deepening and intensifying their flavor.
Recipe Tips and Substitutions
- Do not try to speed up the cooking process. Remember that most of the flavor here comes from the slow cooking and low temperature.
- Try other fresh herbs, or a mix if you like. Thyme and oregano are also lovely with the tomatoes.
- If you want to use dry herbs instead of fresh, use about ⅔ the amount.
- Use any tomato variety you like. I prefer to use a small to medium-sized tomato. Roma tomatoes work very well.
- When you remove the seeds from the tomatoes, do this over a bowl. You will see a lot of juice in the bowl along with the seeds. Strain this and you'll have a nice amount of tomato juice that's perfect for adding to sauces, cooking rice and even drinking if you want.
More Confit Recipes
Once cooked, these tomatoes can be used in so many different ways:
- An hors d'oeuvres or appetizer, on small pieces of crusty bread. (It's extra dreamy with a spread of goat cheese beneath the tomatoes!)
- Roughly chop them for an excellent pasta sauce.
- Tomato confit is a delicious side or topping for meats, poultry and fish.
- A superb pizza topping.
- You can mix them into soups and stews.
- They're so incredible in grilled cheese sandwiches.
- And of course, nothing wrong with simply eating them with a fork. 😉
Can you make it ahead?
- You can make this from start to finish up to six days ahead of time.
- Once you've slow roasted the tomatoes and they've cooled to room temperature, they should go in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Warm them in a 375°F oven when you're ready to use them.
Confit tomatoes are delectable jewels and will enhance everything they're added to -- that is, if you don't eat them all on their own first.
Tomato Confit with Rosemary Recipe
- ¾ cup olive oil
- 1½ tablespoons garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, washed and dried, finely minced
- 5 pounds tomatoes, peeled, cut in half and seeded (instructions below)
- Make the marinade. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic and rosemary. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven and prepare the sheet pan. Preheat the oven to 225°F, drizzle half of the marinade on a sheet pan and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
- Peel, cut and seed the tomatoes. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and set up a large bowl of ice water. Core the tomatoes and slice an "X" on the bottom of each one -- trying only to cut through the skin and not into the tomato. A few at a time, add the tomatoes to the boiling water and leave them only long enough for the skin to begin to pull away from the "X," about 30 seconds. Use a slotted spoon to add them to the ice water. When they're cool enough to handle, remove them from the water and gently peel the skin off. Cut each peeled tomato in half, horizontally, and use your fingers or a small teaspoon to scoop out the seeds. Gently shake the tomato half to remove excess seeds.
- Prepare the tomatoes to roast. Place the tomatoes on the prepared sheet pan, round side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle the remaining half of the marinade over them. If they're not well coated, use a spoon to drizzle it in from the pan. (Don't worry if it's a tight fit -- squeeze in all of the tomatoes, as they will shrink during the cooking process. )
- Slow roast. Roast the tomatoes in the preheated 225°F oven for approximately 5 hours, basting every hour or so with the pan juices. When the tomatoes are done, they will be about half their original size and slightly golden along some of the edges. They should not be dry. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Here's How to Season to Taste.)
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