Nopi’s Ginger Tomatoes
This book made me so happy.
I’m involved in other activities so that I fall behind on the goings-on of the larger Food World, but perhaps that keeps me from becoming jaded and makes the discoveries that I do encounter even more magical and appreciated. So I am still elated when I come across works of art.
Yotam Ottolenghi is a name you may recognize from his London restaurants and numerous cookbooks. Jerusalem has been on my want-list— he and co-author Sami Tamimi explore their childhood foods and boyhood city. NOPI the book is co-written with NOPI London‘s then head chef Ramael Scully, who has now gone on to open his own London restaurant.
Yotam’s other books are specifically geared towards the home kitchens, but NOPI focuses on the restaurant food from the London restaurant in its fully complex beauty but in family sized portions. It’s a feast for the imagination and the eyes, not to mention the salivary glands which respond to even the thought of these creative combinations.
Yep, already the beginnings of wear are showing on this exquisitely clean cover, so take a good look now before the true endearment begins to show in the form of scuff marks, spills, dogged pages, and smudgy finger prints—all the signs of a Beloved Cookbook.
These tomatoes are 1/3 of a dish from NOPI, and slightly altered at that, but they seemed a good treat for a fall day when we don’t mind the oven warming the kitchen. Tomatoes are still in our gardens and farmers markets, and this treat gives an explosion of flavor trapping and highlighting some of the harvest into a bite. Roasting concentrates tomatoes into sweet-tart flavor bombs with a satisfyingly chewy texture, and the addition of garlic, ginger, and chile takes it to a whole other Level of Yum.
NOPI the restaurant serves the tomatoes as a Starter on roasted butternut squash and drizzled with lime yogurt, fried shallots, and cashews, but these buddies could give an electric sparkle to almost any dish or appetizer.
I used a rack but their recipe suggests roasting the tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. A rack may speed up the process but both work well. These tomatoes are before I added the ginger mixture—I probably could have removed them from the oven a little sooner, then let them roast longer after being slathered with the ginger mix. They were still scrumptious even though they look a little darkened.
You’ll want to use a dry tomato of the Plum variety of which Romas are one type. Slicing them lengthwise and placing them skin-side down will trap the juices for more concentrated flavor, but I also like the size of the sliced rounds for use on appetizers.
NOPI’s Ginger Tomatoes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 60-80 minutes
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Slice in half lengthwise or in 3/8″ round pieces::
6 large Plum or Roma Tomatoes
Drizzle and sprinkle with:
Salt and Pepper
Spread the tomatoes on a baking rack placed on a baking sheet, or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. If you sliced them lengthwise, place skin-side down to trap the juices.
Roast the tomatoes for 45-60 minutes or until they begin to get leathery.
While they are roasting mix together:
1 1/4 inch Ginger piece, minced
1 Red Chile, seeded and minced, or Ground Red Chile to taste
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons Brown or Turbinado Sugar
Remove the nearly leathery tomatoes from oven and slather with the Ginger mixture.
Roast for another 10-20 minutes, until tomatoes are caramelized and chewy.
- On crackers with Hummus
- Snack on them by themselves
- In a Kale Salad with Pumpkin Seeds
- On Scrambled eggs
- With Roasted Squash and Lime Yogurt ala NOPI
“We are all the same person trying to shake hands with our self.”