Roasted cherry tomatoes.

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If you you’re a tomato aficionado or not, you know that winter tomatoes pretty much are the nastiest, mealy, flavorless things you can buy.  But the fact remains, if you love sauce for pizza, pasta, salsas or for pretty much anything else… you need to buy/consume these vial impostors.  I live on homegrown, our own for that matter, tomatoes all summer long.  They are without a doubt my favorite thing in our garden. I can eat them pretty much like an apple.  I always have, for as long as I can remember.

So winter comes, and apparently may be staying forever… but I digress.  How do we make these little, what look to be beautiful impostors taste good?  Well, roast them of course!  Even the most kitchen-paranoid can do this.  You can actually host a dinner party quite successfully with this recipe and impress your guests.  So easy and pretty much full-proof – I dare say! Even better, totally vegan!  So if you care about that or not… plant based diets are proven to improve your health and have positive impact on you body.  That my dear friend is a wonderful thing!

Ingredients:

2 -4 lbs of cherry tomatoes (They comes in boxes of 2 lbs. at your local Costco or grocery store.)  Bite-sized cherry tomatoes.
5 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
Olive oil
Salt
Pepper
1 tablespoon of Oregano
Dash red pepper flakes
1 handful of fresh basil leaves
OPTIONAL: 1/2 cup of red wine

Recipe (using 4 lbs was enough sauce for 6 servings) – can easily be doubled or more as necessary.

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Line your baking sheet with sides using a Silpat liner or tin foil.  Wash your cherry tomatoes and then place them on your baking sheet.  Add the garlic.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Then add the salt, pepper, Oregano and red pepper flakes.  Give a good toss and place in the oven.  I roast these until the tomatoes start to split – about 35-40 minutes or so.  I give them a toss midway through roasting.  Once they are soft and start splitting, remove and let cool a bit.  I then transfer them to a sauce pan and add the fresh basil.  Puree with a hand immersion blender (or you can add the mixture to your Vitamix or blender) and blend.  If using a blender, return to the sauce pan and heat over low flame.  Add the wine, if using.  Taste and adjust spices.  Serve over pasta, chicken, veggie noodles or roasted spaghetti squash for a totally vegan diner.  If you prefer a chunkier style sauce, simply use a fork to break the tomatoes apart.

This makes a great pizza sauce as well!  You can freeze for up to one month or keep in the refrigerator for 4-6 days.

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— Knead to Cook

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