September 02, 2007

Roasted and Smokey and Just Plain Good

It’s time for La Festa Al Fresco! This annual event is co-hosted by Lis of La Mia Cucina and Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice, who ask that everyone make a dish made with fresh, seasonal ingredients to share with the world. Usually at this time of year my garden is overrun with tomatoes of all shapes and sizes, the vines are usually weighted down to the ground, but this year I’ve got nothing. Luckily, I’m pet sitting for friends of ours who have a large garden as well and theirs has something that mine does not: tomatoes. Lots of them. They’ll never even notice the few baskets full that went missing… And if they do, the conversation will go something like this:


>>Bri, what happened to all our tomatoes?


>>>Ummm, the dog really seems to have taken a liking to them and those crazy cats were batting a few around. Oh, and I saw your neighbours slinking away from the garden as I pulled in one day… I’d definitely suspect the neighbours. Or it could also be that tomato grub, haven’t you heard? It’s been all over the news, apparently there’s a tomato eating grub that’s sweeping the province, sounds like they’re killer for home gardens.


>>Just bring us some leftovers of whatever you’ve made with our tomatoes.


>>>No problem.



So what did I make with the tomatoes? Among other things, this smoked tomato risotto. I smoked the tomatoes myself with the help of my beautiful smoker by simply drizzling them in olive oil, salt and pepper and letting the smoke do the work. And they pack quite a punch. On their own, they’re almost overpowering, but when you mix them into creamy risotto, the flavours blend perfectly. The risotto was made in typical risotto fashion, (seriously, once you’ve made one risotto, you can make a hundred) the only difference was that I also added some oyster, shiitake and maitake mushrooms, (courtesy of my mushroom growing friend) and instead of using only white wine and chicken stock, I added some milk to make it extra creamy. I didn’t follow a recipe and you don’t need to either. But if you’d like some extra tips and direction, go check out Meeta’s post on Risotto with Creamy Red Pepper, she does a fabulous job of explaining how these things work.



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14 comments:

Kelly-Jane said...

That looks so yummy, I need risotto and tomatoes, I really do!

valentina said...

it looks and sounds delicious.Truly mouth watering. I love risottos.Well, rice is just great wherever you add them.At least in my opinion.

Mallow said...

I've never made risotto...your post makes me think I should try it!

T.W. Barritt said...

There are lots of tomatoes being harvested this weekend, and this dish looks particularly good! I'm about ready to look into buying a smoker ...

Lydia said...

I've never tried smoked tomatoes, but I can just imagine the taste. I think smoked tomatoes might be great in a paella, too.

Lis said...

Wow smoked tomatoes! They sound amazing - especially paired with creamy risotto.. nice job, my friend. =)

Thanks so much (to your friends as well!) for bringing this dish to the Festa!

xoxo

Quellia said...

Yummy!
If it makes you feel any better, I got 1 red tomato in my garden right now, and 3-4 tiny greens ones. And that's it.
However, can I interest you in a about 100 stalks of rhubarb?

Meeta said...

Bril, come over to my place and I'll introduce you to the pilot - I am sure you can help yourself to all his tomatoes if you cook up something like this in return. It looks wonderful. Risotto seems to be on both of our minds LOL!

Jeanne said...

OMG - smoked tomatoes!! Although I have never wanted a smoker before, it's suddenly shot to the top of my "most Wanted" list ;-) Stunning pics of the risotto (which, I discovered, can be very hard to photograph successfully!)

Ivonne said...

Brilynn,

You're the Queen. Really. You are. I'm on my way over for some smoked tomatoes.

Thanks for bringing these to the party, my friend.

Sara said...

Oooh smoked tomatos? That looks so great.

Valli said...

You are so lucky to have a smoker to make these wonderful slow-roasted tomatoes for the rice. It reminds me that I haven't posted by salmon with roasted tomato recipe. Problem is I keep finding such wonderful recipes on all the blogs to try.. I never get back to my favourites!!!!C'est la vie!!!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

I'm hungry. Wow that looks great! Any left overs from the left overs, I think I could be happy! Beautiful.

ejm said...

What a great idea to smoke the tomatoes! I usually oven-dry at least two trays of plum tomatoes every September but now we're going to have to consider smoking some.

What kind of wood did you use, Brilynn?

-Elizabeth

P.S. I'm so annoyed. I planted 3 plum tomatoes in pots this year and almost all the tomatoes (very few per plant as well) have fallen off the vines just as they were beginning to ripen. VERY disappointing.