Recipe Sleuth: Cork’s Oil-Cured Tomatoes

Looking to preserve the taste of summer tomatoes? Read on for chef Ron Tanaka's simple recipe.

If you have a bounty of late-summer tomatoes—and have had one too many helpings of gazpacho—try this recipe for one of the best small plates at Cork, the popular wine bar in DC’s Logan Circle. The restaurant serves the tomatoes with grilled bread brushed with olive oil and topped with goat cheese, but they’re also good in sandwiches or on their own.

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Cork’s oil-cured tomatoes are served with grilled bread and creamy goat cheese.
Photograph by Stacy Zarin-Goldberg

Cork’s Oil-Cured Tomatoes

Makes about 20 tomato slices

1 pound Roma tomatoes

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons canola oil

Salt and pepper to taste

6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

10 thyme sprigs (or more to taste)

Extra-virgin olive oil as needed

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and fill a large mixing bowl with water and ice. Cut the stem out of each tomato, and score the opposite side with a sharp knife. Place the tomatoes in boiling water for 20 seconds, then scoop them out with a strainer and immediately place them in the ice bath. Peel and quarter the tomatoes, then remove the seeds.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, and canola oil; season the mixture with salt and pepper. Place the tomatoes in a single layer on a sheet pan fitted with a baking rack. Place a piece of thinly sliced garlic atop each tomato and scatter the thyme sprigs over them. Bake for 45 minutes.

Cool the tomatoes. Place them in a small container and cover with olive oil. Let them marinate for at least 2 hours before serving. The tomatoes will keep for 2 weeks.

This article appears in the September 2010 issue of The Washingtonian. 

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.