anna’s mom’s pickled tomatoes

8 to 10    |   
Prep Time:
15 minutes

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anna’s mom’s pickled tomatoes

adapted from recipe by Anna Voloshyna

It’s official: I’m sick of soup. In the past month, I’ve made my own minestrone many times, as well as Samin Nosrat’s phenomenal Tuscan Bean and Kale Soup from Salt Fat Acid Heat and Spring Hot & Sour Soup from Bon Appetit to use up some fresh peas. But I’m done. It’s May and I need a taste of summer. I’m craving fresh tomatoes.

It’s also official that registration is open for my summer cookbook writing course at Stanford. Which is a convenient coincidence because that is how I met Anna Voloshyna (she took my class last summer) and that is how I come by this amazing recipe for her mother’s pickled tomatoes. Anna is from Ukraine and these are a taste of home that I’ve eaten at many of her pop-up dinners. They elevate grocery store tomatoes to sublime by soaking them in an easy herby marinade for a few days. It’s an excellent excuse to do some refrigerator cleaning, too: put those herbs sitting in the produce drawer to work. And it’s pantry friendly because it uses ingredients you probably have on hand. Since I’ve made these, I’ve spooned them onto avocado toast, onto bruschetta with goat cheese or feta, tossed them into salad, and, frankly, eaten them straight from the fridge with a spoon. They are that good. And they will be a centerpiece for the cookbook Anna is working on.

If you dream of writing a cookbook and you want to join my class, this is a great year to do it. The class will be live via Zoom so you can take it from wherever you are (take note that it is held in the evenings Pacific Time). I will miss connecting with everyone in person, but by sharing our recipes with each other, and the world, we are doing the next best thing.

to get info on How to Write a Cookbook, click here

2 lbs small red tomatoes, such as Campari or Pearl
1 large bell pepper, any color
1 medium jalapeño pepper
4 peeled garlic cloves
1 cup chopped fresh herbs, such as dill, parsley, and/or cilantro
1/3 cup sunflower, grapeseed or mild olive oil
1/3 cup distilled white vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Cut each tomato in half (no need to core it unless you want to). Pack the tomato halves into a clean, wide-mouthed 2-quart glass jar with a tight-fitting lid or into a glass bowl.

Stem and seed the bell pepper and cut into large chunks. Cut off the jalapeño stem and cut the pepper in half lengthwise; cut out the seeds and ribs. If you want a spicier pickle, leave in the seeds and ribs.

To make the marinade: in a food processor or blender combine the peppers and the rest of the ingredients and pulse for about 30 seconds until you get a thick, slightly chunky mixture. Pour the marinade over the tomatoes and close the lid or cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap or foil. Refrigerate for at least 3 days, stirring the tomatoes occasionally if they are in a bowl and not covered with the marinade. To serve, portion out the amount of tomatoes and marinade you want to eat and let come to room temperature for the best flavor. Keep remaining tomatoes refrigerated.

Note: Tomatoes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one month. Over time, they will develop even brighter acidity and the complex flavor of slightly fermented tomatoes.