Food for Thought

Savory/Sweet Switch: Tomato Tarte Tatin

By Alexandra Fleischman | July 2, 2013

Whether tomatoes belong to the fruit or vegetable families is a debate we’ve all heard before. But, at least they are always treated as a vegetable, making it into salads, sauces, curries, condiments, and pastas. The list goes on. With the exception of a tomato jam, I just haven’t encountered tomatoes used in sweet breakfasts or desserts. (Thinking again, that’s not true: tomato basil sorbet, but it wasn’t very good or dessert-like.)

That is, until Bon Appétit posted their recipe for a dessert tomato tarte tatin. (A savory tomato tarte tatin wasn’t new– add some onions and olives to the tomato mixture, and use less caramel, and this goes well for dinner.) I was intrigued, and so was the blog world. Their reviews were positive, pleasantly shocked. So when I saw beautiful plum tomatoes this week, I knew what I would be using them for. (Although I considered these, too.)

Don’t believe me? Let your friends try it, and don’t tell them the pieces of fruit on top are tomatoes. Like in tomato jam, if you’ve ever tried it, they retain their signature tomato flavor but it’s hard to identify because it’s so different. I like to think this is akin to finding the essence of the tomato: the flavors in common between a pomodoro sauce and this pie have survived the widely different treatments, and  it’s delicious.

Get the recipe over at Bon Appétit. Other than using cane sugar instead of regular and using one fewer tomato, I didn’t adapt the recipe at all. Tip: the caramelizing stage took me a bit longer than 25 minutes. Make sure that it’s bubbling a lot, or the juices from the tomatoes will take forever to evaporate.

For more Savory/Sweet switches, try:

Blueberry-Apple Shrub

Sweet, Caramelized Croutons

Savory Chili Cheesecake

Vegan Red Pepper Savory Muffins

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