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Roasted Tomato Cornbread Crumble

July 10, 2007

My apprentice Erin Simpson originated this recipe one day when we had too many tomatoes. We enjoyed it the first day, and refrigerated the remainders in the dish. We found ourselves reheating what was left over the next few days, and each day it was better. This is definitely an ideal make-ahead and reheat dish, although, of course it can be served right away.

2 1/2 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, cored, cut into fourths
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh thyme (optional)
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
Coarse salt and fresh black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil.

For the crumb topping
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
1/2 cup cornbread crumbs
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 300°. Oil a baking dish or pan. Move tomatoes to the oiled dish. Sprinkle garlic, thyme, and rosemary over the top. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes. Cover with a layer of parchment or waxed paper topped with foil. Bake for one hour.

As it bakes make the crumb topping by pulsing the flour, cornbread crumbs, and butter in a food processor until butter is in pea-sized bits. Stir in the grated parmesan. This can be made ahead of time and kept chilled until ready for use.

Remove the roasted tomatoes from the oven. Using a slotted spoon transfer the tomatoes to an oiled 1-quart oval gratin dish, reserving liquid for another use or discard. Top with crumb topping, pressing the topping down gently with fingers. Bake for 40 minutes or until it is golden brown.

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