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Fire Roasted Tomatoes | Sortachef

Fire Roasted Tomatoes

I’d love to tell you that the tomatoes here at Chez Bullhog were wonderful this year, but it just ain’t so. For a true tomato connoisseur, this is one tough admission.

Homegrown tomatoes here at Chez Bullhog

Oh, we put the plants in the sunniest spot in the garden and by turns coddled and abused them at just the right times. We thinned the unproductive shoots and trimmed half the leaves the way we do in the Northwest to get the best crop. But while they looked pretty good on the vines, all those red tomatoes never matured all the way to the center.

(I suspect it has something to do with that old nighttime temperature, which throughout our Seattle summer hovered just above 50 degrees. The poor little darlings got cold at night!)

When I had the woodfired oven revved up for pizza the other day, I roasted a bunch of these tomatoes to see what would happen. With the backdrop of a good pile of coals and lots of active flame, it really worked a treat. The tomatoes softened nicely and took on a marvelous flavor tinged with garlic, olive oil and apple wood smoke. And man, are they sweet!

Now while I realize not everyone has a woodfired oven to make these in, you can use your conventional oven to get similar results. Get your oven as hot as it will go, follow the steps below and finish the tomatoes for a minute or two under the broiler. Roasted tomatoes are great over pasta, spread on pizza or turned into a dip for fresh bread. Yum!

Fire Roasted Tomatoes 

3 pounds of red tomatoes (slightly underripe is okay)

¼ of a medium onion

2 large cloves of garlic

3 Tablespoons of olive oil

½ teaspoon of oregano

Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cut small tomatoes in half, medium ones into quarters and large ones into 6 or 8 pieces. Slice onion into strips. Break or cut garlic cloves into chunks.
  2. Spread 2 Tablespoons of olive oil onto a heavy cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Distribute tomatoes, onion and garlic chunks evenly in one layer. Drizzle with more oil and sprinkle on the oregano, salt and pepper.
  3. Roast for 15 minutes in a flaming hot pizza oven or 20 minutes in a 475° conventional oven, turning tomatoes over and pan around halfway through to ensure even cooking. Finish for a minute or two under the broiler, if desired.

To make Roasted Tomato Dip: In a food processor, combine a crumbled slice of good day-old bread with a large clove of crushed garlic. Add 1 cup of roasted tomatoes, some grated parmesan and just enough of the roasted tomato juice to make a smooth paste. Serve warm or cold with hunks of fresh bread.


9 comments to Fire Roasted Tomatoes

  • Nice! I can’t get enough tomatoes and roasting them is the best way to bring out the flavors. Thanks for sharing.

  • I love tomatoes. Lots of flavor roasting veggies.

  • Oooh this looks good. Love fire roasted tomatoes! Glad to have met you on foodbuzz. You have a great site! Buzzed!!

  • The Salad Queen

    These roasted tomatoes are wonderfully sweet! I had them over rice with a bit of feta crumbled on top for lunch today.

  • Elsie

    I live in easten Canada and the tomatoes were terrible this year. We had a slow start to the summer and then it was hot, hot, hot! we just had our Thanksgiving weekend and I was telling someone at our Thanksgiving dinner that the only good tomatoes I had this year were the heritage ones my SIL gave us. The rest that we had from our Farmer’s market were definitely missing that really great tomato taste. Just so you know that you are not alone in the not-so-tasty-tomato department.

  • Ann

    I just purchased some tomatoes to do exactly that….but I don’t have your amazing pizza oven….mine will go in the regular oven. GREAT pictures!

  • It seems that it just wasn’t the year for tomatroes this year. My beloved heirlooms were in short supply this year. I can see that you are still putting your woodfire oven to excellent use Don.

  • Those tomatoes are just gorgeous!

  • Michelle

    I made these over the weekend for a pasta recipe … oh my goodness – FABULOUS! I had no idea how simple it was to make these. I’m “following” you now!! Thanks so much!

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At Woodfiredkitchen.com, Sortachef takes you on adventures in the kitchen and beyond, with tales to suit. Many of his offerings are woodfired - a flaming good recipe for pizza, bread, or something different. All recipes are original and tasty. Enjoy!
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