A Food & Travel Blog

Cherry Tomato Confit

09/04/2013 | By

Summer seems to be lingering in Adelaide at the moment.  Not in a nasty “Oh, my god it’s going to be how hot today?” kind of way, but in a very pleasant warm, sunny “I think we’ll have lunch outside again” kind of way.  Never mind that my summer clothes are starting to look just a little tired or that I am unable to get away with the five day stubble on my legs – I might as well enjoy the weather while it lasts.  Although, if the weather gods are listening, it would be totally perfect if we could have some rain at night.  My poor garden is very thirsty.

There are still lots of lovely, ripe tomatoes to be found and I’m happy to eat them while I can, but I haven’t quite finished stocking up on some for the duller days ahead.   One beautiful way to save the fresh taste of summer tomatoes is to slow cook them in the oven and store them in oil.  I used cherry tomatoes for this.  These small, red bombs are gorgeously sweet and intense.  Cooking them in this way deepens and compounds the taste, making them little explosions of potent summer flavours in your mouth – evoking the sunnier days gone by.  I’m not too sure how long they will keep in your fridge as I’ve never had the opportunity to find out in this house – they are snapped up pretty quickly.

I’ve been known to eat these with a spoon straight out of the jar, but they are also good in salads, tossed through pasta or on foccaccia.  For this batch I added fresh thyme and garlic, but rosemary, oregano and/or chilli flakes would be quite wonderful too.  The taste of the olive oil will be important here, so try not to skimp on the quality.  Make sure that your jars are very clean – wash with hot soapy water and dry in the oven, or run them through a hot cycle in the dishwasher.  Like so much of my cooking this recipe is dead simple, but the end result is really, really more than the sum of it’s parts.

Cherry Tomato Confit

Little bombs of summer flavour to brighten up the duller days ahead.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr
Author: Amanda McInerney of www.lambsearsandhoney.com


  • 1 kg ripe cherry tomatoes stalks removed, halved
  • 100 mls good olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic peeled and very finely sliced
  • Sprigs of fresh herbs of your choice thyme, rosemary or oregano are great
  • Sea salt
  • ground black pepper
  • Extra olive oil for storing


  • Preheat oven to 170C.
  • Drizzle some of the oil over the base of an oven-proof dish and spread to make a film over base of dish.
  • Place tomatoes cut side down in dish.
  • Sprinkle with garlic and herbs, then drizzle with remaining olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cook in oven for 40-50 minutes until tomatoes are soft and just collapsing, but not charred.
  • Cool, then place in jars and cover with extra olive oil.
  • Store in refrigerator.


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  1. Lisa the Gourmet Wog

    I love that you refer cherry tomotoes to ‘red bombs’! This looks lovely and very tasty. I think like you, I’d be eating this straight out of the jar 🙂

  2. Tandy

    I absolutely love this recipe 🙂

  3. InTolerant Chef

    I bet this tastes of Bottled Summer- so rich and delicious indeed! Our summer is lingering too, isn’t it lovely?

  4. Kate

    We are having an Indian summer aren’t we – it is meant to be dry for another month – nice for us but bad for the gardens !

  5. celia

    Oooh yum! I’d like some of those on sourdough toast for breakfast!

  6. Tania @ The Cook's Pyjamas

    I make something similar to this but never thought to store them in oil. Although that may be because no matter how large the batch they seem to be eaten before I can actually use them for something. They are treated like lollies in this house. Good idea though. I might make a batch on the quiet and squirrel it away in the oil for use through winter.

  7. Eha

    Guess what is on my next weekend’s ‘work’ schedule? And the babies are on special at my greengrocer’s!!

  8. Catherine Bedson

    Hi Amanda, it’s been very pleasant having the summer linger hasn’t it! I bought a new jumper and haven’t had the pleasure of wearing it yet, wasn’t expecting the good weather to last this long. These tomato bombs look very tasty, what a great way to preserve them for later.

  9. lizzie - strayed from the table

    What a great way to use a glut of cherry tomatoes. When they come on the endless buckets of them you collect some times can be so overwhelming. How long do you think they would keep for in the fridge?

  10. Hotly Spiced

    I know what you mean about your summer clothes looking a little tired. But I don’t seem to have any winter clothes. What did I wear last winter? Your tomatoes look so gorgeous. What a great way to use up a plentiful harvest. So sorry I can’t send you some of our copious rain xx

  11. Lizzy (Good Things)

    Oh Amanda, what a beautiful recipe and pefect for this time of the season. I have so many tiny tomatoes still coming on… might just give this a try! LOL re the five day stubble.

  12. Mandy

    I remember I made a massive lot of a similar recipe with slow roasted Roma Tomatoes cut in half with garlic and then slow roasted and stored in oil in the fridge . I noticed some bubble after a week and rang the CSIRO about how long they would keep etc , after a very interesting chat the experts said you have to be very very careful as ‘Botulism ‘ can occur , so they said to use them up quickly unless canning or preserving . As you said yours would never last that long !

  13. Amanda

    Seriously good point about storage time, thanks Mandy. As I said, mine don’t last so I don’t know how long they would keep so it’s probably best to eat them sooner rather than later.

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