Cold simmered tomato 冷製トマトの含め煮

japanese cake

After the success of the cold simmered vegetables I made, I decided to make cold simmered whole tomato in the same broth. The quality of tomato is important for this type of dish but I did not have a good local or home grown tomato. The ones I bought recently at the grocery store looked and smelled like real tomato but it turned out they were from Canada. Our northen neighbor is not well known for producing early season tomatoes and this must have been a green house tomato. Nonetheless this was the best I could do. It was a small but reasonably ripe tomato.

I served it well chilled and garnished with a dab of wasabi and  “mitsuba” 三つ葉 (meaning three leaves) which I started growing in a pot on the window sill this year. The shoots are sill small and just started producing “three leaves” after two “sprouting” leaves.

Since mitsuba was quite delicate, I just soaked it in hot water (from our Instant hot water dispenser) for 10-20 seconds and then shocked it in ice cold water.

Broth: I reused the broth I had when I made cold simmered vegetables. It is a broth made from kelp and dried bonito flakes and seasoned with mirin, sake and light-colored soys sauce or “usukuchi shouuyu” 薄口醤油.

Tomato: This is rather small tomato from Canada. I scored the bottom and blanched it in boiling water for 20 seconds and plunged then into ice cold water and them removed the skin.

I was not sure how long to cook the tomatoes but since it was a fresh tomato, and I was not making stewed tomatoes and I decided not to cook too long. I placed the tomatoes in the cold broth on medium flame. As soon as the broth started boiling, I turned it down to simmer and cooked 2 more minutes. After, it cooled to room temperature, I placed the pan in the refrigerator.

The next day, I served this as a second dish for the evening.  I used our young mitsuba as a garnish. I also put a small dab of wasabi and the cold broth.

This was surprisingly very successful. The tomato was still firm but not raw. The tomato flavor was enhanced by the lightly seasoned subtle flavor of the broth. Conversely, the tomato flavor infused into the broth which was unexpected but refreshingly good. Served ice cold, this dish was the perfect way to eat a veggie on a hot and muggy summer day.

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