One of my favorite summertime indulgences is a vine ripened tomato. Unfortunately, we don’t get the best that our local farmers offer, until later in the season. I keep buying tomatoes and getting disappointed. They just aren’t so good, quite yet.
So I needed to come up with a way to use all of these tomatoes! I’ve always loved the bold and zesty flavors of sundried tomatoes. They are a household staple, always providing an instant burst of flavor, to an otherwise, dull meal! So I came up with a way to capture this zesty flavor, in a spreadable, adaptable ‘jam’.
I sliced my tomatoes into quarters, added a little olive oil to my sauce pan, heated the pan to medium heat and tossed the tomatoes with a hefty pinch of salt. I stirred, every few minutes, as the heat broke down the tomatoes. This is what they looked like after 10 minutes….
At this point, I added 2 small spring onions, sliced thinly. You could add any onion or even a clove of garlic. I decided that I really wanted to rely on flavor of the tomato, so I kept it simple!
So, I continued to let the tomatoes simmer for another 10 minutes. As the liquid cooks off, you can smell the concentrated scent of the tomatoes. You have to be patient and really get these cooked down, or else you’ll just end up with tomato sauce! 10 minutes later, I added some balsamic vinegar for added flavor and depth of color. And some fresh basil, thinly chopped. The fresh basil compliments the tomato flavor perfectly. Salt to taste.
Keep stirring! You’re almost there! In these last 10 minutes, the color really intensifies, the onion is breaking down and the liquid is almost completely gone. Give it a taste! Add more salt, if needed. Reduce heat, to avoid burning. Cook down so it looks like this….
At this point your jam should be tangy, flavorful and thick. I immediately used it as a condiment for a savory crepe, adding crumbled goat cheese, roasted asparagus and topped with some local greens! Pure heaven! Feta would also pair nicely with tanginess of the tomato.
As the week progressed, I experimented with using the jam in other ways. I used it as the base for a yummy salad dressing. Super simple and delicious! But, the best use is as a condiment for a wrap or sandwich.
We enjoyed it all week long! It stores well in the refrigerator for about a week….but it won’t last that long;)
- 4 tomatoes
- 2 tbs EVOO
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 small spring onions or 1 small shallot
- 1/4 cup of fresh basil chopped
- Salt to taste
- Quarter tomatoes. Add EVOO to small sauce pan and heat to medium. Add tomatoes and a hefty pinch of salt. Get tomatoes to simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add spring onion. Continue to simmer for another 10 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and basil. Salt to taste. Continue to reduce, for 10-20 more minutes, lowering the heat if needed. remove from heat, once the flavor is to your liking and the jam is nice and thick. Salt as needed.
- Can add a clove of garlic or other herbs for a change in flavor! Use it as a sandwich spread, a garnish for a cheese plate, a base for salad dressing, etc! Keeps in the refrigerator for a week. Enjoy!