If you are wondering what blistered tomatoes are, let me provide an introduction. Blistered tomatoes are charred on the outside yet packed with gorgeous juices on the inside.
I highly recommend this cooking technique since it is the easiest and the best way to cook cherry tomatoes if you have several at home.
What do you need to know about blistering?
If you have not heard about blistering before – it is a technique that typically involves vegetables, including cherry tomatoes.
Generally, blistering vegetables only takes around 5-10 minutes together with the prep time. It provides you with a healthy or even an Instagram-worthy side dish or add-on to almost any type of dish.
The firm types of vegetables such as snap peas, green beans, asparagus, broccolini, shishito peppers, and others work well for blistering. Some of the water-rich vegetables such as eggplant and zucchini with the skin intact also work well, but make sure to slightly grease the skillet.
The blistering technique also works for fruits such as avocado and peaches for a sweet treat to indulge in. You can find a variety of tasty recipes that involves the blistering technique. For now, I will share what I know about blistering tomatoes.
An introduction to blistering tomatoes
It only takes 5 minutes to prepare, and it provides your cherry tomatoes with a sweet, decadent, and savory flavor that you will surely enjoy. When cooking the tomatoes in a blazing hot skillet, it chars the exterior while the interior stays tender and juicy.
As you drizzle balsamic vinegar at the end, it imparts a sweet-tart trace. You can incorporate blistered tomatoes in almost any type of dish – as an appetizer, over grilled fish, in a simple pasta for a dash of color and burst of flavor. Read further as I share more about this basic cooking technique.
What do you need for blistered tomatoes?
When preparing blistered tomatoes, you only need a handful of ingredients. I recommend using the best tomatoes possible, which is the key to getting a great dish. Let us take a look at the key ingredients.
- Cherry tomatoes. When choosing your cherry tomatoes, I suggest using the ripest and the best ones you can find. You should not forget to check out the farmers’ market for the best choices. At present, the majority of grocery stores offer hydroponic greenhouse cherry tomatoes, which boast great flavor. Just make sure that you are familiar with the quality before making this recipe.
- Balsamic vinegar. The addition of balsamic vinegar imparts the ideal sweet-tart tang to your cherry tomatoes. I recommend using the aged variant if you can find one, but any will work fine.
- Olive oil. If you want the best results, I suggest using extra virgin olive oil.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
Several tips on preparing blistered tomatoes
When preparing your blistered tomatoes, you should consider several vital tips that I will share below.
Avoid overcrowding the pan.
An essential factor to consider when preparing your blistered tomatoes – they need enough space. If you crowd the pan with tomatoes, they will steam instead of blistering. Remember that the tomatoes release juices, resulting in a slushy muddle. I will share two tips on how to avoid overcrowding below.
- Use the biggest skillet that you have. If you have one, use the largest skillet available. Check that all the tomatoes have enough space between them and are not crammed together.
- You can use steel, cast iron, or a non-stick skillet, depending on what is on hand. I suggest cast iron since it holds heat well. Many prefer cast iron, including myself, because it distributes heat well, and once it is seasoned, it is easy to clean.
- Cook in batches if the tomatoes are too crowded. In case the tomatoes are overcrowded, an alternative is cooking them in batches.
Using medium-high heat
In some recipes, it might instruct you to use high heat. However, I recommend using medium-high heat since it is precisely right, and it lowers the risk of smoking oil. Allow the skillet to sit on the stove for about five minutes to heat up before adding the oil and tomatoes. Do not skip this step.
Wait for the oil to get hot in the pan.
Allow the oil to warm up in the pan before adding the tomatoes. Take a minute to spread the oil around the pan using a silicone brush or carefully rotate it. If you are using cast iron, I suggest using an oven mitt since the handle can get extremely hot.
Avoid stirring during the first minute.
As much as possible, avoid stirring the tomatoes since it helps the first charred side to develop.
Shake the pan occasionally instead of stirring
Remember that stirring can cause the tomatoes to rupture, which allows the pan’s juices to spread, thus increasing the likelihood of steaming. By shaking the pan, it rotates the tomatoes and achieves the necessary char on all sides.
Stainless steel skillet as an alternative to cast iron.
In case you do not have a cast-iron skillet, you can use a stainless one. The key is to allow the pan to warm up on the stove. Take note that non-stick pans should not be used since the non-stick coating might not withstand the heat.
Serving the blistered tomatoes
After preparing your blistered tomatoes, I will share some ideas on how to serve them.
- As a side dish. The blistered tomatoes work well on their own as a side dish for chicken, fish, or any summer dish.
- As an appetizer, you can place your blistered tomatoes on Greek yogurt and serve along with crusty bread of your choice.
- In pasta. Add your blistered tomatoes to any pasta with Parmesan and fresh basil.
On crostini. This is another great appetizer idea. Simply spread goat cheese on crostini and top it off with blistered tomatoes and basil.
A close look at the best-blistered tomato recipe
Let us now proceed to the best-blistered tomato recipe. Simply gather your ingredients and follow the steps so that you are on the way to getting the ideal blistered tomatoes. The cooking time for this vegan recipe is only 5 minutes and suitable for four people. As for the calorie count per serving, it is only 92.3
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 pints whole cherry tomatoes
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 pinches kosher salt
- Fresh Ground black pepper
Warm-up two tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once it is hot, add the tomatoes and make sure that there is enough space around every tomato, and the pan is not crowded. If you have a medium pan, cook the tomatoes in batches. If the pan is jam-packed, the tomatoes will steam instead of blistering.
Allow cooking for up to a minute without stirring the pan. Wait for 2 to 3 more minutes until the tomatoes are blistered, shaking the pan a few times to rotate them.
Switch off the heat and drizzle with balsamic vinegar, gently shaking a few times to coat the tomatoes. Add two pinches of kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. Serve the blistered tomatoes warm, either over grilled fish, in pasta, as a side dish, or even as an appetizer.
When preparing blistered tomatoes as a side dish, appetizer, or add-on to your pasta or main dish, following the recipe I provided and the useful tips will ensure that you will get tasty and enjoyable tomatoes that you will surely love!