If you could symbolise summer in a dish, this would be it. A quick and straightforward recipe that bursts full of wonderful flavour. It’s perfect for enjoying relaxing in the sun with friends and a glass of something alcoholic.
What item epitomises summer more than the humble tomato. The tomato has long been a favourite for the amateur British gardener. Stroll through any village during the start of the summer, and you’re sure to find many of its inhabitants fussing around feeble-looking tomato plants squeezed into small greenhouses.
Why are British gardens so chock a block with toms? Well, we Brits love a challenge. There’s nothing like growing sun-loving fruits in a country where the sun shines about 2 days a year. It’s almost inevitable that damp British summer will kill even the strongest tomato overnight with blight.
But it’s also the taste. You can’t beat the flavour of a freshly grown tomato, picked ripe and still warm from the afternoon sun. That taste is made even better by the unfavourable growing conditions of the UK. We’re not as spoilt with the fantastic tomatoes of the continent.
I’ve made this dish to celebrate one of my favourite tomatoes, the cherry tomato. I’ve always loved a cherry tomato because it’s small enough to enjoy in one mouthful. I thoroughly relish munching on cherry tomatoes raw and without any dressing. They have such a tremendous sweet flavour for such a small fruit.
However, in this recipe, we’re not enjoying cherry tomatoes raw. Instead, making them into a beautiful sauce. Something that I feel cherry tomatoes, and indeed fresh tomatoes, don’t get used enough for during the summer months. We’ve all grown too accustomed to using canned, chopped tomatoes in our cooking that even when tomatoes are in season, we reach for the pre-prepared variety. Yes, it takes a little longer to make the fresh tomatoes into a sauce, but it’s well worth the wait.
This braised tomato and spiced chickpea toast recipe is one of my favourite summer meals. It’s effortless to make and yields a fantastic fresh dip that is sublime with a slice of good sourdough bread. I mostly use it as a quick weekend meal in the sun, which serves two generously. It also makes a perfect appetiser or accompanying dish to the main meal.
I hope you try it with your tomatoes, whether grown, bought or stolen.
If you like this tomato recipe you’ll love
Braised Tomato & Spiced Chickpea Toast
This meal is around 85% less polluting than the average UK meal.
Eating this recipe will save around 2.51 KG CO2e per person.
That’s equivalent to the emissions produced driving 20.72 KM in a modern car.How do I calculate this?
- Sourdough toast to serve
Whipped butter beans
- 1 (400g) Can Butter beans (drained)
- 1 Tablespoon Tahini
- 1 Tablespoons Olive oil
- 1 Clove Garlic
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 Teaspoon Sea salt
Braised tomatoes and chickpeas
- 400 g Cherry tomatoes
- 1 (400g) Can Chickpeas (drained)
- 1 Tablespoon Harissa paste
- 1 Tablespoon Tomato paste
- 2 Cloves Garlic (minced)
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Sea salt
- 5 g Chives (finely sliced)
- Add all the ingredients for the whipped butter beans into a food processor or blender and whiz until smooth. The finished butter bean dip should be thick but smooth. If the bean dip comes out a little too thick, add a dash of water and blitz. Repeat until the dip reaches the desired consistency.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Toss in the 2 cloves of minced garlic and tablespoon of harissa. Saute for a few moments until the harissa has coloured most of the oil.
- Tip in the 400g of cherry tomatoes, can of drained chickpeas, tablespoon of tomato paste and teaspoon of sea salt. Stir briefly, then cover and cook for 20-25 minutes until the tomatoes have softened and made a rich sauce.
- Plate the butter bean dip by smattering it on a large serving plate. Then tip over the cooked tomatoes and sprinkle with the chopped chives. Enjoy immediately by dunking chunky slices of sourdough into this glorious mess.