One of the dishes that I grew up with is tomatoes, halved, and seared in a frying pan, cut side down, until soft and caramelised. Is it an Australian thing? or maybe a rural Australian thing? These were served as a side dish or with a breakfast spread. They are really great with baked beans, for example.
Today I love them just as they are. Great tomatoes, good olive oil, some crunchy bread and a little salt. Perfection. They are also great on flatbread type bases – use wraps, tortillas, socca or pudla. Squish them, or not, and use on toast, in salads, on nachos type dishes and pizzas, or spread a puree and top with these yummy tomatoes. They can also be squished into a pasta sauce, or normal sauce, or Indian style chutney. Which ever way, scatter with lots of chopped herbs and spring onions (scalliions).
The flavour of this dish belies its simplicity.
This dish is also an excellent one for the BBQ.
Fried Tomatoes in Garlic Infused Oil
beautiful, tasty tomatoes, cut in half crosswise
approx 1 Tblspn olive oil per tomato
garlic – approx 1 clove per 2 tomatoes, sliced in half
sea salt and black pepper, to taste
Heat the oil in a flat pan on medium heat and add the garlic. Allow to infuse in the oil without burning, and remove from the pan when golden.
Add the tomatoes, cut side down, and cook for 5 – 10 minutes – the time will depend on the tomatoes and on your heat level. Then flip the tomatoes and cook for about 4 – 5 minutes more. Remove to a platter and season with sea salt and black pepper.
If you like, use the crispy fried garlic to garnish the tomatoes, or put them to use in another dish.
Serve and enjoy!
recipe notes and alternatives
Rather than black pepper, use a pinch of sumac or a tiny drizzle of pomegranate molasses.
Dried mint, fresh or dried basil, or dried dill can also be sprinkled over the tomatoes.
Or make it Indian style – cook the tomatoes using ghee instead of olive oil, infuse the oil with garlic and Indian dried red chillies, and make a tadka of mustard seeds, cumin, asafoetida, urad dal, channa dal, sliced green chilli and curry leaves.