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Cherry Tomatoes

Tripper Jul 23, 2009 10:14 AM

Watching my cherry tomato plants begin to produce and realizing I am going to have a lot of cherry tomatoes. Any suggestions for how to use them? I have half red sweet 100's and a yellow pear shaped one...thanks for any ideas.

  1. hollyd Jul 23, 2009 10:30 AM

    succotash of lima beans, halved cherry tomatoes, fresh corn, red onion and cilantro. So good.

    4 Replies
    1. re: hollyd
      fourunder Jul 23, 2009 10:57 AM

      Succotash? That's similar to my corn relish recipe....only I use garbanzo or cannellini beans instead of the lima beans. I usually give it a southwestern flair and spice it with the addition of Chili or Cayenne peppers.

      A great side dish served hot, room temperature or cold.....Roasted String Beans/Haricot Vert with Cherry Tomatoes. I like to use shallots or garlic depending on what is available at the time in my pantry...just olive oil, kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper. I personally do not care for vinegars or other acids....but naturally, season according to your preferences and tastes.

      1. re: fourunder
        hollyd Jul 23, 2009 04:40 PM

        well succotash is any salad that's mostly corn and lima beans, I thought.

        1. re: hollyd
          fourunder Jul 23, 2009 04:44 PM

          I guess I should have used a smiley face:-) ........Sorry, my intent was to compliment you.

          1. re: fourunder
            hollyd Jul 24, 2009 07:10 AM

            woosh, right over my head.

    2. c
      cocktailhour Jul 23, 2009 10:49 AM

      roast them very slowly--like 200, 250, for along time, maybe a couple hours. drizzle with good olive oil ad garlic first. then you can eat them out of hand or freeze them for later use, like in the dead of winter.

      2 Replies
      1. re: cocktailhour
        Vetter Jul 28, 2009 06:53 PM

        I like roasting mine like that, but I usually skip the garlic. When they're coolish toss them on pasta with whatever cheese and herbs you like together. It's something nice to eat at room temp.

        1. re: cocktailhour
          nvcook Jul 31, 2009 03:53 PM

          Those roasted cherry tomatoes are excellent in almost any pasta dish.

          I also halve them and stuff witha mixture of mayo, bacon, green onion. Combinations are endless.

        2. Chris VR Jul 23, 2009 10:51 AM

          You can oven dry them.

          1. happybellynh Jul 23, 2009 11:20 AM

            I had THOUSANDS last summer, and had to get creative about using them. I oven-dried tons of them, just as it (no oil or flavorings) and froze them for later use. I used them in soups, stews, quiches (yum!), sauces, sandwiches, pasta mix-ins.... all the time.

            Also, I frequently (like, every other night) served a salad of halved cherry toms (I had 4 colors), mixed with oil, a vinegar (balsamic, red wine, champagne, sherry....), a cheese (fresh mozz, bleu, feta, etc), and fresh herbs (thyme, basil, oregano, chives). I would just pick a 'theme" based on whatever was on hand or went with the rest of the meal, let it marinate on my counter for a few hours, and it was a great side dish. Or- use the whole mix, and toss it with fresh pasta as a no-cook sauce.

            2 Replies
            1. re: happybellynh
              Tripper Jul 23, 2009 12:16 PM

              How did you store and use the dried cherry tomatoes? It sounds like a good idea, I am wondering how to make use of them later.

              1. re: Tripper
                happybellynh Jul 24, 2009 09:07 AM

                I halved them and placed on a sprayed cookie sheet, slow roasted at about 200F for maybe 3 hours until they were still soft, but leathery-feeling. Then cool and store in ziplock in the freezer. I placed 2 cups or so in a sandwich bag, then all my little bags in a one-gallon ziplock. Then pull out one bag at ta time to keep in the fridge and use over a week or so.

                As I noted above, I used them almost anywhere that tomatoes would be good- but they were very sweet, so I limited the sugar in the overall dish if there was any. My very favorite dish with them was a CI creamy tomato sauce- crushed toms, dried toms, and tom paste with wine and garlic, and a splash of cream.

            2. greygarious Jul 23, 2009 12:23 PM

              Make a colorful short-cooking pasta sauce: sweat red onion, scallion, and garlic. Add thinly-sliced bell pepper in at least two colors. When just about soft, add fresh basil and whole cherry tomatoes and simmer until they start to collapse. Last year I made a good and pretty variation using diced pancetta, red and green for the bell peppers, and yellow cherry tomatoes.

              2 Replies
              1. re: greygarious
                hotoynoodle Jul 28, 2009 09:11 AM

                in summer, i do an uncooked sauce.

                get out your serving bowl. slice the cherry tomatoes in half (or rough chop larger ones) and mix them in the bowl with salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil, red chili flakes and pieces of a soft cheese, like brie or goat. i often add basil or mint, lemon zest and juice too. let this all marinate at room temp for a few hours, under plastic wrap.

                cook the pasta, drain and dump it in the bowl. toss. you can reserve some of the pasta water and add it to *loosen* the sauce if needed.

                1. re: hotoynoodle
                  Boudleaux Jul 31, 2009 03:42 PM

                  Yum! I do this too but I've never used brie. Interesting! I usually use parmesan.

              2. t
                TampaAurora Jul 23, 2009 01:53 PM

                This Tuscan Tuna Salad sounds delicious, fits your requirement and may possibly be my lunch tomorrow.


                1. l
                  lgss Jul 23, 2009 02:33 PM

                  For a while I took cherry tomatoes and hummus to work for lunch every day!

                  1. l
                    lgss Jul 23, 2009 02:34 PM

                    My Dad used to take buckets of them to work to share as a snack.

                    1. Tom P Jul 23, 2009 03:45 PM

                      This is a ridiculously easy recipe I have started to make frequently, not only because it is so easy but because it is so killer good:


                      5 Replies
                      1. re: Tom P
                        Tripper Jul 23, 2009 05:01 PM

                        This sounds great...so did the sides (succotash, green beans etc) mentioned and the pasta sauce. Thank you to everyone...should keep me busy for a while.

                        1. re: Tripper
                          geminigirl Jul 27, 2009 06:14 PM

                          I gotta agree on this recipie, so good and so easy...

                          I have frozen lots of cherry tomatoes due to the same problem (unfortunately this year the tomoato blight wiped me out due to all the rain...) - I have used frozen ones in this recipie, not quite as good, but still a nice meal in the winter, you just get a bit more liquid due to the tomartoes being frozen...make some 5 minute bread to soak it up with and you are all set!

                          1. re: geminigirl
                            Val Jul 28, 2009 05:31 PM

                            I, too, love this Epi recipe and have made it many times! I believe I have also posted it on Chowhound in various threads...it is so beautiful with marjoram OR basil...you just can't go wrong. A fabulous summer dinner, for sure!

                            1. re: Val
                              lexpatti Jul 30, 2009 06:29 AM

                              I think I got that recipe from you Val, thank you. Love it too!!!!

                            2. re: geminigirl
                              kubasd Jul 28, 2009 06:07 PM

                              i had a ton of tomatoes today... and i'm pretty sure in a couple days i'm going to be overrun with sweet 100s and yellow pear tomatoes too.... weird coincidence reading this thread.... I've already eaten many plain with salt pepper and basil (that i picked too), I'm planning a roasted cherry tomato sauce (halve, toss with evoo, s&p, and add some basil when almost done, toss with pasta and some pasta water), I'm going to make tomato tarts (single layer with roasted garlic, carmelized onion, etc), sun dried tomatoes.... and there i'm stuck

                        2. buttertart Jul 24, 2009 07:35 AM

                          James Beard's peeled cherry tomatoes with garlic and herbs: Blanch the round ones very briefly, peel them (yes it's a pain, but this is a delicious dish), and just warm them through (so they don't collapse) in olive oil in which you have previously cooked a clove or so of finely-chopped garlic and some fresh thyme or other preferred herb. Could also leave out the cooked herb and top with fresh basil (the recipe dates from a day in which fresh herbs other than curly parsley were not widely available). James Beard: what a cook.

                          1. mbfant Jul 27, 2009 10:15 AM

                            I tend to buy a lot of very high-quality cherry, grape, and other tiny tomatoes, and they don't always get finished before showing their age ... I rinse them off, spread them out, whole, on a baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, and roast at about 300 for a couple of hours, or till they are completely squishy but not blackened. I then put them through the food mill to make a purée, which freezes nicely for a variety of uses later, including as is for pasta sauce. By not using garlic, chili, or anything with the roasted tomatoes, you have more flexibility when you use it later.

                            1. l
                              LJS Jul 27, 2009 12:53 PM

                              Just made the cutest looking Caprese salad with halved cherry toms and pearl bocconcini...maybe 'cute' isn't what you are looking for in a recipe (it isn't usually a part of my food selection criteria!), but this looked adorable on a ladies lunch plate.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: LJS
                                mbfant Jul 27, 2009 10:32 PM

                                You can take the Caprese cuteness a step further by skewering them on toothpicks as an hors d'oeuvre, but don't forget the basil leaves.

                                1. re: mbfant
                                  LJS Jul 28, 2009 07:40 AM

                                  I can picture that...three or four little mini-kebabs would make a sweet side to one of those tiny hamburgers.Then a great big fat real-life-sized margarita!

                                  Oh and strawberry short cake-also life-sized! ...sweet summer heaven.

                              2. chicgail Jul 28, 2009 04:18 AM

                                Mine sit in a bowl on the counter and get nibbled on as snacks. Lots of them never even make it into the house.

                                Last night I made a zucchini salad (zukes sliced with a vegetable peeler, tossed with basil, evoo, balsamic vinegar, s&p) -- and halfed cherry tomatoes. Really good.

                                1. v
                                  valerie Jul 28, 2009 07:58 AM

                                  I have never made this tomato onion tart but it is always on my "to do" list. It always gets raves on Chowhound.


                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: valerie
                                    geminigirl Jul 29, 2009 06:32 PM

                                    oh, thanks for the reminder, I have made this in the past and it is delicious! I use Ina' s crust (pate brise?) recipie...

                                  2. h
                                    Harters Jul 28, 2009 03:07 PM

                                    Had a really nice salad at a local bistro tonight. Baby spinach leaves, thinly sliced mushroom and roasted cherry tomato. They'd been roasted so they were soft but still holding their shape. Good change in texture and a really intense tomato flavour. Worked well with the onglet steak.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Harters
                                      italy531 Jul 28, 2009 05:20 PM

                                      Fetuccine with a pinch of saffron mixed in with the water to boil. Cook shrimp in a little bit of olive oil, and add tomatoes, olives, and capers just long enough to heat. Serve over the pasta with a drizzle of really good extra virgin olive oil.

                                    2. souschef Jul 28, 2009 08:04 PM

                                      Puree with some watermelon. Strain, then add finely-diced veggies and seasonings to the liquid and serve as a gazpacho.

                                      1. raygunclan Jul 28, 2009 08:43 PM

                                        i got this recipe off of the food network site. it is a roasted cherry tomato dressing and it is ABSOLUTELY fabulous! i swear i'm going to get kicked off of chowhound for sharing it too often! (c:


                                        * 1 pint cherry tomatoes
                                        * 1 clove garlic, smashed (i use 4 because, well, i love garlic!)
                                        * Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling, plus 1/4 cup for the dressing
                                        * Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
                                        * 1-3 tablespoon red wine vinegar (i love vinegar)
                                        * 1 teaspoon sugar
                                        * Handful fresh parsley leaves (although i use basil 'cuz i have it)


                                        Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

                                        Take a roasting dish and lay the tomatoes out with the garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast for 15 to 20 minutes until the tomatoes have burst and juices are slightly caramelized.

                                        Remove from the oven and place in a blender with all the pan juices. Add the red wine vinegar, 1/4 cup olive oil, sugar, parsley, and salt and pepper. Pulse until well combined. Set aside to cool in the refrigerator.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: raygunclan
                                          dfrostnh Jul 29, 2009 04:34 AM

                                          thanks, I hadn't seen the recipe yet ... and hopefully I will have an abundance of cherry tomatoes in a week or so.

                                          1. re: dfrostnh
                                            raygunclan Jul 29, 2009 07:19 AM

                                            we eat it on a spinach salad with only goat cheese and avocados. SO DARN YUMMY!!!

                                        2. alkapal Jul 30, 2009 04:11 AM

                                          my own creation -- "Easy Microwave Garlicky "Roasted" Cherry Tomatoes"-- is terrific, if i do say so myself. they remind me of garlicky french-style escargot, probably because of the umami effect from the pecorino romano cheese, garlic and savory evoo. it is so quick and easy to make, and quick and easy to eat....they may not make it to any table. ;-).


                                          1. c
                                            cheesecake17 Jul 30, 2009 06:47 AM

                                            I roast them in a hot oven (450) until they are slightly charred and about to burst. Top with a handful of mozzarella and broil until the cheese is melted and bubbly. It's a delicious light meal with an arugula or spinach salad.

                                            1. d
                                              don515 Jul 30, 2009 07:22 AM

                                              I love this cherry tomato relish and the tri-tip recipe that goes with it. Relish is good on anything and great in pasta and it keeps a long time..




                                              1. d
                                                don515 Jul 30, 2009 07:23 AM

                                                For relish i get out most of the seed and juice of the tomatoes think it help it keep longer


                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: don515
                                                  souschef Jul 30, 2009 07:37 AM

                                                  This reminds me: I usually do this with large tomatoes.....I peel and seed them, then chop them and cook them over low heat for a long time with garlic, butter, salt and pepper, until all you have left is the essence of the tomato. It is really delicious stirred into stuff like risotto.

                                                  1. re: souschef
                                                    mbfant Jul 30, 2009 08:57 AM

                                                    How do you keep it, and for how long? Presumably extra-virgin olive oil would do in place of butter, yes?

                                                    1. re: mbfant
                                                      souschef Jul 30, 2009 09:03 AM

                                                      I use it right away, but my guess is you could keep it in the fridge for a few days. Olive oil would work fine.

                                                2. buttertart Jul 30, 2009 10:10 AM

                                                  You could also purée them in the food processor and use them in soups and stews, etc.

                                                  1. n
                                                    normalheightsfoodie Jul 30, 2009 01:49 PM

                                                    I have a yellow plum tomato plant.

                                                    I roasted them 350 for 1/2 hour or so, in a corning the other day with a little olive oil, basil, garlic and pinch of salt.

                                                    1. OysterHo Jul 31, 2009 06:23 PM

                                                      When I was in Italy, one of our guides told me about Aqua Pazza (Crazy Water). I can't remember what he cooked in it, but I use it for poaching salmon.

                                                      Combine water, white wine, olive oil, lemon juice, chopped or sliced shallots, lots of cherry tomatoes, salt, pepper. Just enough to go halfway up the sides of the salmon filet.

                                                      Then I poach it until it's finished. Most of the water and wine evaporate and you're left with a very light sauce that's delicious. Some of the tomatoes crack open, but it's ok. It tastes great.

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