An Open Cookbook

An Open Cookbook


Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce

It is the third Wednesday of the month, which means Recipe Swap time. Christianna from Burwell General Store chooses a recipe for our swap group to look over and individually interpret a new version. This month is Tomato Pudding from Hotel Dilworth:

I had never heard of tomato pudding before this assignment and was very tempted to make a tomato pudding just to see what it was like. The fact that it was a sweetened tomato puree baked on top of diced bread was quite intriguing. So I wanted to keep with the theme of a tomato puree of sorts on top of bread. My freezer has been housing a bag of sliced Italian bread leftover from girls' cabin weekend from months ago. Every time I open the freezer, I have get a reminder they need to be used. Most of the time I think I will just toast and puree them into bread crumbs. But not anymore. They would literally be the base of the recipe.

I wanted to keep with the tomato puree idea as well. I reached into the back corner of my brain for this one. I just couldn't think of anything creative for a few days. And then for some reason I was pairing roasted tomatoes with a roasted red pepper. It is still pretty chilly here in Seattle, so a roasted vegetable puree sounded quite nice for dinner.

What better to go with roasted red pepper and tomatoes that basil and Parmesan. All of these lovely ingredients pureed together for a red pesto-like spread, atop a roasted eggplant slice and Italian bread. What else besides wine and chocolate could anyone ask for?

Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce
Yields 1 cup

Below is the recipe for the roasted red pepper and tomato sauce that is the star of the canapes pictured. I have also included the other components of the canape so you assemble them too. The sauce can also be used on pasta, crackers, as a sandwich spread, or simply eaten with a spoon like I did.

2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 medium red pepper
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan
1 tablespoon olive oil

Ingredients for canapes:

Italian bread, sliced
Eggplant, sliced into thin rounds
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Toss tomatoes, 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Layer tomatoes, cut-side up, and the whole red pepper on a parchment lined baking sheet. Roast in oven for 10 minutes.

Rotate red pepper. Roast for 10 more minutes. Remove pan from oven and transfer tomatoes to the bowl of a food processor.

Turn on oven's broiler. Replace parchment if it has burned. Return red pepper to baking sheet and place in oven. Roast for an additional 10 minutes, checking on it often. It should begin to char and turn black.

Remove charred red pepper from oven and place in a plastic bag and seal. Allow red pepper to rest for a few minutes.

Carefully open bag and allow steam to escape. Remove red pepper and peel thin outer charred skin from pepper. Remove stem and seeds. Slice into four large pieces and transfer to the food processor with tomatoes. Allow to cool.

Place garlic, basil, lemon juice, Parmesan, salt, and pepper in the food processor bowl. Puree the whole mixture until smooth. Keep food processor running and slowly pour 1 tablespoon olive oil through the feeding tube until fully incorporated. You may need to scrape sides of bowl and puree again to get a completely smooth sauce.

Toast thin slices of Italian bread. Saute eggplant slices in olive oil, salt, and pepper until lightly browned.

Assemble canapes by placing an eggplant slice on an Italian bread toast. Spoon tomato and red pepper puree on top of eggplant. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Broil for a few minutes if desired.


Mary said...

This sounds delicious. These are some of our favorite flavors.

The Cozy Herbivore said...

I'm obsessed with canapes lately, and these look just lovely. A great interpretation of the original recipe.

I must admit I'm a little disappointed that no one tried it as-written, and although I was tempted to do so myself, I just knew it wasn't going to be all that delicious. These vintage recipes are hilarious, aren't they?

Alex said...

this sounds Heavenly! I could eat an entire plate! this would be great for a party

Cake Duchess said...

This looks wonderful. I never had a tomato pudding either and wasn't sure if anyone would eat it here;)Love your recipe for the swap, Alli:)

The Dusty Baker said...

That looks perfect! I almost went with the original recipe too, just to see, but it was a bit chilly in NYC too when I was working with the recipe, so a comforting version made its way into my kitchen too. This looks delicious!

Pola M said...

Love this bruschetta kind of dish! It sounds delicious!

Barbara | Creative Culinary said...

I think many of us were 'somewhat' tempted to go with the original recipe but no matter how interesting one might sound; it seems too easy, as if we MUST do something, anything different...otherwise where is the challenge? I guess the challenge would be in nor worrying if someone thought we weren't up to it huh?

These sound great and one thing I know...I'm SO ready for some tomatoes now to start trying some new dishes!

Rachel said...

What a pretty plate of delicious food you have there! I'd eat that whole plateful if it came anywhere near me. Great interpretation of the tomato pudding!

Lana said...

LOL! I also went with roasted tomatoes and red pepper, but I made soup (and grilled cheese:)
But I agree that your sauce is as simple and as delicious as it can be, with so few perfectly picked ingredients (I second your last sentence, too:)

tasteofbeirut said...

Had a similar dish recently at home and we all loved it!

Alli Shircliff said...

Can't go wrong with bread, roasted vegetables and cheese :)