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Let's Eat

Charred tomatoes with mint

(Food Styling/Sheryl Julian and Jill Gibson; Wendy Maeda/Globe Staff)
October 13, 2010

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Serves 4

The last-of-the-season tomatoes and mint create a beautiful side dish with Middle Eastern flair. Blacken the tomatoes in a cast iron skillet and toss them with fresh mint leaves, crisp slices of red onion, and a light red-wine vinaigrette. Plum tomatoes keep their shape well, but you can use any variety of tomato. Serve the dish with kebabs, hearty fish, or lamb chops, which will complement the smoky tomatoes.

8 large plum tomatoes, cored
5 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup mint leaves
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Heat a large cast iron or other heavy skillet over medium-high heat for 5 minutes.

2. Slice tomatoes in half lengthwise and gently scoop out the seeds. Dry the cut surfaces with paper towels and brush lightly with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.

3. Place tomatoes in the hot skillet, cut sides down. Cook for 5 minutes or until they blacken. Turn with a metal spatula and cook 2 minutes more. Remove from the skillet and leave to cool.

4. Coarsely chop the tomatoes into 1-inch pieces and transfer to a bowl. Add onion, mint, vinegar, and remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Jill Gibson. Adapted from “The Union Square Cookbook’’