Our garden this year was best yet. We amended our soil last fall, adding truckloads of soil taken from an area riverbed and that apparently made a big difference. Our tomatoes have been particularly prolific, and during the middle of summer, I was picking a basket full daily. Although I adore fresh, ripe tomatoes, I do get a little tired of trying to turn them into soups and sauces on a daily basis. Looking for inspiration for something new from the internet, I came across a recipe for tomato butter. Although I have made compound butters in the past, they were usually created to top grilled meat and included fresh herbs and garlic. This butter uses fresh cherry tomatoes that are roasted until they blister and just begin to blacken. The tomatoes are blended with softened butter and fresh herbs. This butter would be delicious on grilled fish or chicken, spread on bread as a base for a tasty panini, brushed on toasted crostini as an appetizer, or even tossed with hot pasta or rice.
You can season this butter with a myriad of ingredients depending on your mood, but I flavored mine with fresh thyme, a garlic clove, some red pepper flakes and salt and pepper. This butter develops a more intense flavor as it sits, so I recommend making it at least the day before you plan to use it. Once made, you can store this butter in the refrigerator for up to a week, or roll it into a log and freeze it, cutting off a small piece when needed.
A typical day’s tomato harvest.
Deborah Mele 2016
- 1 Pint Ripe Cherry Tomatoes
- 8 Ounces Unsalted Butter At Room Temperature
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme Leaves
- Sea Salt & Black Pepper To Taste
- 1 Large Garlic Clove, Peeled
- 1/2 Teaspoon Hot Red Chili Flakes (Optional)
- Preheat oven broiler to high and place the tomatoes on a foil lined baking sheet.
- Broil the tomatoes until the skins blister and begin to brown, shaking the pan to brown all sides, about 6 to 7 minutes.
- Cool the tomatoes to room temperature.
- Place the tomatoes, butter, thyme, salt, pepper, chili flakes, and garlic clove in a food processor and pulse until blended, but not completely smooth.
- Place the butter into a small dish and cover until needed.