It’s 4 p.m. and you’ve just found out that seven friends are coming over for dinner. You’re pressed for time and don’t have much in the way of ingredients, but you’re up for a challenge.
That was the situation our podcast co-host Tom Philpott found himself in a few weeks ago. He had just a couple of hours, a bit of fresh pork, canned tomatoes, and a pantry with the basics. He called up food writer and host of The Splendid Table, Francis Lam, who offered a brilliant solution.
Listen to Lam’s step-by-step instructions on his take on tomato butter (the segment begins at 15:50):
“Basically, I’m getting you a hack that’s going to save you some serious time,” Lam said. Here’s his recipe, in a nutshell:
Set your oven to 350 degrees. Purée your tomatoes (fresh or canned), and pour a thin layer onto a sheet tray. (You may want to use multiple sheet trays if you have a lot of puree.) Allow the puree to bake, stirring in a little olive oil or herbs, though not too much. Bake it until it’s reduced to a jamlike consistency. Remove the sheet pan from the oven and let cool. Put the puree in a food processor with a small amount of butter. Voilà! Spread this sweet and rich tomato butter on toasted bread. You can also spread sautéed ground pork or beef on top.
If you’re not a fan already, check out The Splendid Table on iTunes, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.