Roasted tomatoes. Praise of these tender, wilted, sweet, tart, musky squashed orbs has been written by many of those writers and chefs I admire. As they’ve already approached this simple and sigh-worthy culinary treat with a bounty of tales to coax our hunger, I’ll approach the subject from a different perspective — their gemed appearance.
I was timid about deciding what to shoot for my final studio photography workshop. On one hand, I wanted to shoot something elaborate. A full table set with snippets of my vintage prop collection surrounding a bountiful meal. I wanted all of us to find a place at the table and relish the meal with our sights. It was so delightful and inviting in my mind’s eye. On the other, more practical hand, the Bruins were vying for the Stanley Cup (yay!) and parking spots near school we papered with signs of “No Parking - Event…” Walking a few blocks, solo, with all that table dressing and meal would include was too hefty a trial for me. Thus, reality shushed my fantasy - “Keep it simple,” she urged. Seemed a more approachable and less back straining course to follow.
As usual, I headed to a local market for inspiration and was greeted by a collection of yellow, orange, red and auburn tomatoes. Lovely and fresh I imagined they’d be another version of attractive when roasted. With whole garlic. In a vintage pie pan. I gathered the crop of props in mind and set out to roast the tomatoes in the morning before work. Keep their appearance fresh for the shoot that night.
If you set out to roast tomatoes, I suggest roasting them in the morning. The perky aromas have no savory match. Filling a home with garlic and piping olive oil first thing in the morning starts a day off just right. The recipe I followed was a riff on a few recipes I noted across the Web. As I only had 45 minutes before heading to work, I didn’t have the luxury of roasting them for three hours. That method I’ll save for a Sunday.
Although a minor feast for our eyes, think of all you could flavor with these roasted gems. Pepper atop a salad. Tuck into an omelet. Blend with hummus topped with a drizzle of olive oil and smidgen of flavored salt. Many options stem from their simplicity, and all will be beautified by their colorful personalities.