Tomatoes have been around since prehistoric times, but it wasn’t until the 17th century that they became popular in Europe.
This was thanks to Christopher Columbus who brought them back from his first voyage to America.
Today, we use tomatoes as an ingredient in many different ways.
They can be eaten fresh or made into sauces, jams, pickles, and even preserves like this tomato confit recipe!
What Is The Difference Between A Tomato Confit And A Regular Tomato?
A tomato confit is not necessarily a preserved tomato – instead, it refers to any dish that features a whole roasted tomato (or other fruit).
You might also hear people refer to “tomato sauce” when what they really mean are canned tomatoes with herbs and spices added to them.
If you want to know how to tell if something is actually a “confit,” check out our guide on how to identify food products at home.
In short, there isn’t one definitive definition for what makes something a “confit.”
For example, some people consider anything that comes from a jar or box to be a “confit,” while others will only label things as such if they were cooked in oil or fat.
In general, a tomato confit should taste more concentrated than its raw state.
The flavor profile of a tomato confit is often dominated by olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and sometimes sugar.
If you prefer your tomato confits sweeter, add additional honey or brown sugar to the mix.
The main benefit of making a tomato confit is that it allows you to enjoy a lot of flavors without having to cook them yourself.
When you eat a tomato confit, all of the ingredients come together perfectly in your mouth.
This means that you get to experience each individual element without having to spend hours in the kitchen preparing it.
You don’t need to buy fancy equipment to make a tomato confit either.
All you need is a skillet, stovetop, oven, pot, pan, and a few simple utensils.
A basic blender or food processor would work just fine too.
How Do You Make A Tomato Confit?
A tomato confit is basically just a jar full of tomatoes preserved with sugar and salt.
The sweet-and-salty combination creates a great balance of flavors that will keep your tomatoes tasting delicious year round.
You can also add spices if desired.
Step 1: Pick ripe tomatoes.
Choose big, juicy tomatoes that are still firm enough to hold their shape when cut open.
If they start to ripen too much while you wait, place them in a paper bag at room temperature to slow down the process.
Step 2: Wash the tomatoes thoroughly.
Wash the tomatoes under running water so there aren’t any dirt or debris left on them.
Make sure each one has a good rinse before placing it into the bowl where you plan on storing it.
Slice through the skin of the tomato with a sharp knife.
Be careful not to cut all the way through the skin because you want to leave part of it intact so the flesh doesn’t dry out during storage.
Step 4: Cut slices across the top of the tomato.
Cut crosswise lines every inch or two, depending on how thick you want your slices to be.
For example, if you want thinner slices than mine, I would make my cuts about half as deep as mine.
When slicing up larger tomatoes, try to keep your slices uniform in size.
Step 5: Remove the stem.
Once you remove the stem, take care to remove any seeds inside.
To do this, slice along both sides of the seed pod.
Once you get close to the center, gently pry open the seam using a spoon or paring knife.
What Are Some Of The Best Tomatoes To Use For A Confit?
There are so many types of tomatoes out there, each with their own unique flavor profile.
You can choose any type of tomato you want for your confit, though.
Here are some of the most common varieties available today.
- Cherry tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes are small enough to eat whole and still retain their shape while cooking. If you don’t mind eating a little skin on these tiny fruits, you should try making cherry tomato confit.
- Plum tomatoes: Plum tomatoes are meaty and dense, which makes them great for baking or roasting. Their sweet taste pairs well with savory foods such as cured meats, cheeses, and fish.
- Roma tomatoes: Roma tomatoes are large and round and feature thick walls on their rind. These tomatoes tend to hold up better during long cooking processes because of this design.
- Heirloom tomatoes: Heirloom tomatoes are heirlooms (or heritage) tomatoes that grow naturally without having undergone genetic modification. These tomatoes are prized for their rich color, complex flavors, and ability to withstand tough growing conditions.
Whatever kind of tomato you decide to use, you will need to select one ripe and firm enough to stand up to the lengthy cooking process.
The longer you cook your tomatoes, the more concentrated their flavor becomes.
So choose a tomato that has good balance between acidity and sweetness.
What Are Some Of The Other Ingredients In A Tomato Confit?
Some of the common ingredients you would find in a tomato confit include garlic, onion, olive oil, salt, pepper, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, allspice, vinegar, sugar, and more.
In addition to these basic ingredients, there are also a few other things you should know about when making your own tomato confit.
For example, if you want to add some flavor, you could sauté some herbs with the onions after they are cooked down on medium heat.
You can also try adding spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, coriander, nutmeg, paprika, etc., along with the onions to give your confit its unique taste.
What Is The Cooking Time For A Tomato Confit?
With this tomato confit recipe you will need to cook your tomatoes for about three hours.
You could also add herbs such as basil or oregano to give it more flavor.
You might want to try adding lemon juice to the mixture if you don’t want too much acidity.
The whole process takes about two days to complete so start early on Sunday morning to get everything done before dinner time!
What Is The Temperature That A Tomato Confit Should Be Cooked At?
A tomato confit has two main ingredients – tomatoes and salt – so you need to decide how much salt you want to add before you begin your preparation process.
When making a tomato confit, there are no hard-and-fast rules about what temperature you should cook it at, however, most people prefer cooking their tomatoes at a low temperature because it helps prevent any flavor loss.
It’s also important to remember that some recipes call for tomatoes to be cooked slowly over long periods of time while others only require a short amount of time.
So, if your goal is to create a sauce with very little work then you may want to consider cooking your tomatoes at lower temperatures and allowing them to simmer for longer than usual.
However, if you love your food and don’t mind spending more time preparing meals, then you might choose to cook your tomatoes at higher temperatures and finish off the dish quickly.
If you would rather not worry about whether or not your tomatoes will get too soft during the cooking process, then you could always opt for a quick method instead.
For example, you could fry your tomatoes in oil with garlic powder and other spices such as basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary, thyme, cumin, paprika, chili pepper flakes, and onion powder.
Once you remove your tomatoes from the pan, season them with salt and serve them immediately.
Although frying your tomatoes isn’t exactly the healthiest option, it does produce delicious results!
What Is The Best Way To Store A Tomato Confit?
A tomato confit lasts up to two weeks in the fridge if you keep it sealed tightly with plastic wrap.
You will need to cook your confit before using it as its texture may change after being stored for so long.
If you are planning on eating the sauce straight away then there isn’t much risk of it going bad, however, I would recommend cooking the confit before serving it as the flavour will not retain well over time.
If you want to freeze some of your confit sauce for later on, let it cool completely before placing it in freezer bags.
Once frozen, they will last longer than when kept refrigerated.
There are several other methods to storing a tomato confit depending on how you plan on using it.
For example, if you plan on making a tomato ketchup, then it can go directly into jars without cooking because the acidity helps stop any bacteria growth.
How Long Does A Tomato Confit Last?
The main thing you need to know about tomato confits is how long they will keep.
There isn’t any specific time period but if you follow these steps correctly then your tomato confit should last up to two years.
- Select ripe tomatoes. The fresher the better when making tomato confit. You want to avoid green tomatoes because their flavor won’t develop properly.
- Cut the tomatoes into quarters (or halves depending on size).
- Place each piece of tomato into a small pot with enough olive oil to cover the top of the pieces by at least 1 inch.
- Bring the water down to simmering point while adding salt and sugar to taste.
- Cook until the tomatoes start to soften, about 30-45 minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
- Once cooled, place the tomato confit into jars using the liquid left over from cooking which should help prevent mold growth. Store in a dry area away from direct sunlight.
- You can also freeze the leftover liquid for future use. Just add ice before storing in freezer bags so it doesn’t expand too much.
- Finally, remember to label jars clearly so you don’t confuse them with other types of tomatoes.
How to cook a tomato confit
There are several different methods you can choose to prepare a tomato confit including slow cooker, oven, and stovetop.
These options work perfectly well and there’s no right or wrong method to do it.
Slow cooker is probably the easiest option as you just put everything inside together and let it sit overnight.
Then the next day you’ll take out the tomatoes and pour off excess oil.
You can either eat them right away or refrigerate them for later consumption.
Oven baking works best if you prefer to cook your tomato confit rather than letting it sit overnight.
Follow the same process except cook the tomatoes in the oven instead of the slow cooker.
For those looking for more convenience, you can bake your tomato confit on the stovetop.
Place all ingredients into a saucepan and bring to boil.
Once boiling, turn down the heat to medium low and continue to stir occasionally until the tomatoes become soft.
What Are Some Of The Uses For A Tomato Confit?
Most people think of tomato paste when they hear the word “confit,” but there is another type called a “confiture” which means fruit preserved with sugar.
A confiture may also contain spices, herbs, and other ingredients.
Tomato confits are similar to these types because they are both preserved by cooking.
There are several reasons why you would want to make your own tomato confit at home.
One benefit is that you get to control what goes into it.
The amount of salt, pepper, garlic, and other flavors can all be adjusted according to taste.
Another reason is that you can store it in the fridge for up to two months so you will always have plenty on hand.
Finally, if you don’t eat everything before it goes bad, you can freeze it for later use.
The following guide gives you step-by-step instructions for how to prepare a tomato confit recipe.
You will learn about the process, how to prep the vegetables, and how to cook the dish.
- Step 1: Rinse the tomatoes under cold water then pat dry with paper towels.
- Step 2: Slice each tomato in half lengthwise, making sure not to cut through the stem end.
- Step 3: Remove the seeds using a small spoon.
- Step 4: Place the tomato halves face down onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Step 5: Bake in the oven at 350°F (177.8°C) for 40 minutes.
- Step 6: Once baked, remove the pan from the oven and let cool.
- Step 7: When the tomatoes are cooled enough to touch, carefully peel off the skin, removing any remaining flesh attached. If desired, slice the tomatoes into wedges.
- Step 8: Add the oil, vinegar, honey, brown sugar, onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves, and black peppercorns to the blender. Blend well.
- Step 9: Pour the mixture over the sliced tomatoes.
- Step 10: Let sit overnight at room temperature.
- Step 11: Transfer the mixture to a pot set over medium heat. Cook until thickened, stirring occasionally.
- Step 12: Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly.
- Step 13: Serve warm or chilled.
Make it fun with kids!
A great way to teach children about food preservation while having fun is to make a homemade jam.
To do this, follow the same steps above except skip Steps 6 and 7.
Instead, place the rinsed, halved tomatoes in a large saucepan and add just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan.
Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, drain the tomatoes and discard the liquid. Return the drained tomatoes to the pan and add the rest of the ingredients listed above.
Continue heating gently until the mixture reaches 220ºF (104ºC). Allow the mixture to cool slightly then transfer to a bowl and refrigerate overnight.
Next morning, strain the mixture through cheesecloth or a clean cotton kitchen towel and pour into jars.
Store in a cool location for six weeks before consuming.
There are several types of tomato confits you can make depending on your preference.
For example, if you want to keep your tomato confit simple, you could just slice up the whole tomatoes and put them in oil with salt and pepper.
If you prefer something more complex, you can take things further by adding herbs and spices such as garlic, onion, rosemary, thyme, etc., to your tomatoes before putting them in the oil.
You can also add other ingredients such as olives, capers, anchovies, or cheese.
You may be wondering how long you should let these tomatoes sit in their oil before serving them.
The answer depends on what kind of dish you plan on using them in.
As a general rule of thumb, you would cook your tomato confit for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176 Celsius) so that it has time to develop flavor.
However, there are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to cooking your tomatoes and only you know exactly how much time will do each batch.
- 10 Roma tomatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- Set the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Toss the tomatoes in a bowl with the olive oil, thyme, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- The tomato halves should be arranged cut-side up on a wire rack that has been fitted to a baking sheet. Cook the tomatoes for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until they are shriveled and soft.
- serving recommendations: Slice the tomatoes roughly, then place them in a serving basin. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and offer with crostini. Use as a topping for roasted chicken or fish, or add to pre-made tomato sauce to enhance flavor.