Tomatoes Filled with Aromatic Herbs in Caper Broth

Adapted by StarChefs.com
January 2011
Yield: 4 Servings

INGREDIENTS:

Flavored Polishes
2 kilograms red onions, peeled
salt
sugar
1 kilogram Morrón peppers, stems and seeds removed
1 kilogram green bell peppers, stems and seeds removed
Caper Broth
2 kilograms ripe Pear tomatoes
Amukina or other produce cleanser
salt
sugar
200 grams Ballobar capers, stems removed
0.2 grams xanthan gum
Tomato Fillings
1 kilogram ripe pear tomatoes
Amukina or other produce cleanser
Fine salt
sugar
10 grams Kalamata olive oil
2 grams lemongrass stalks, chopped
2 grams fresh chives, chopped
2 grams fresh mint, chopped
2 grams fresh rosemary, chopped
Lime-Treated Cherry Tomatoes
2 liters water
40 grams cooking lime
salt
16 3-to15-gram cherry tomatoes
30 grams sugar
To Assemble and Serve
olive oil
small basil leaves

METHOD:

For the Flavored Polishes:

Preheat a steam oven to 100°C. Slice the red onions in half. On a hot plancha, sear the onions without oil and season with salt and sugar. Put the onions into a Cryovac® bag, and cook them in the steam oven for 5 hours. Remove the onions from the oven, and immediately strain and reserve their excess liquid.

On a hot plancha, roast the Morrón peppers without oil, until they are golden on all sides. Season the dry-roasted peppers with salt and sugar. Put the peppers into Cryovac® bag, and cook them in the oven for 4 hours. Remove the peppers from the steam oven, and let them rest for 30 minutes so they continue to sweat. Drain the peppers without pressing them or applying pressure, and reserve the resulting Morrón pepper liquid.

On a hot plancha, roast the green peppers without oil, until they are golden on all sides. Season the dry-roasted peppers with salt and sugar. Put the peppers into a Cryovac® bag, and cook them in a steam oven for 3 hours. Remove the peppers from the steam oven, and let them rest for 30 minutes so they continue to sweat. Drain the peppers without pressing them or applying pressure, and reserve the resulting green pepper liquid.

In a saucepan, reduce the onion liquid to a resin-like state and season with sugar, if necessary. Take care that the reduction does not become bitter. Reserve the resulting Red Onion Polish. Repeat with the Morrón pepper liquid and green pepper liquids separately for Morrón Pepper Polish and Green Pepper Polish.

For the Caper Broth:

Wash the tomatoes well in a solution of water and produce cleanser, such as Amukina. Pat the tomatoes dry, and purée them in a food processor with a pinch of salt and sugar. Pass the resulting tomato purée through cheesecloth, applying as little pressure as possible—it should yield about 500 grams of liquid. Reserve the nearly colorless liquid and refrigerate until chilled.

Slice the capers in half, and add them to the chilled tomato liquid. Add the tomato-caper mixture to a Gastrovac, and for 1 hour at 62°C. Begin counting the hour as soon as the Gastrovac reaches 62ºC. Remove the mixture from the Gastrovac, and strain it immediately through cheesecloth. Chill the resulting liquid—it should yield about 200 grams—in a reverse bain-marie. Cover the liquid, and reserve.

Pulse the reserved tomato-caper liquid with the xanthan gum in a food processor. Seal the mixture in a Cryovac® bag to eliminate any bubbles that may have formed from the addition of the xanthan gum. Reserve the mixture.

For the Tomato Fillings:

Preheat the oven to 170°C. Wash the tomatoes in a solution of water and produce cleanser, such as Amukina. Pat the tomatoes dry and arrange them on a rimmed baking sheet. Season the tomatoes with salt, sugar, and Kalamata olive oil. Put the tray in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Strain the roasted tomatoes and any liquid on the baking sheet. In a hot saucepan, reduce the tomato liquid by half and reserve.

In a food processor, purée 100 grams of the tomato liquid with the lemongrass. Pass the purée through a fine-meshed strainer. Season with salt and sugar, if necessary, and reserve. Repeat with 100 grams of tomato liquid and the chives, mint, and rosemary, respectively.

For the Lime-Treated Cherry Tomatoes:

Mix the water and the cooking lime in a food processor, pulsing for 1 minute. Pass through a fine-meshed strainer. Stir the mixture well and reserve.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil—with a ratio of 12 grams of salt to 1 liter of water. Blanch the cherry tomatoes in the water just long enough so they can be easily peeled. Shock the scalded tomatoes in an ice bath and peel. Put the peeled cherry tomatoes into the lime bath and stir gently every 5 to 10 minutes to prevent the lime and water from separating. Leave the tomatoes in the lime bath for 3 hours. Wash the tomatoes to remove all traces of the lime.

In a saucepan, mix 100 grams water with the sugar and bring to a boil. Remove the syrup from the heat and cool in the refrigerator.

Preheat the steam oven to 40°C. Put the cherry tomatoes and the syrup into a Cryovac® bag, taking care that there is only 1 layer of ingredients in the bag. Put the bag into the steam oven and cook the tomatoes for 40 minutes. Remove the tomatoes from the pouch, and put them onto a sheet of heat-resistant sulfur paper. Dry the tomatoes in an oven for 30 minutes at 80°C.

To Assemble and Serve:

Heat the Caper Broth to 70°C.

Fill the Lime-Treated Cherry Tomatoes with the different Tomato Fillings—lemongrass, chive, mint, or rosemary—and steam them until they are heated through. Coat the Chive-Filled Tomatoes with Green Pepper Polish, adding a little olive oil at pickup. Coat the Lemongrass-Filled Tomatoes with Morrón Pepper Polish and a little olive oil at pickup. Coat the Mint-Filled Tomatoes with Red Onion Polish and a little olive oil at pickup. The Rosemary-Filled Tomatoes should be smudged with a tiny bit of charcoal and burned quickly with a blowtorch at pickup. At the last minute, the tomatoes should be quickly heated under a salamander.

Pour a small pool of Caper Broth into a shallow bowl. Plate the tomatoes on top of the Caper Broth, arranging the tomatoes so the Rosemary-Filled Tomatoes are eaten last. Arrange the basil leaves around the tomatoes as though the plate were a Zen garden.

*The maturation point of the tomatoes is critical. If they are overripe, the lime will break the skins.