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Relax, I am not going to make you sit over a bowl of boiling water and a mound of tomatoes and skin and deseed those bastards.
Come on. I’ve got 3 kids, I’M hungry. I want to eat now, not next century.

Put however many tomatoes you have and a head of garlic on a baking tray and roast at 180 degrees C for about 30 mins (who counts? I took them out when they looked leaky and hot. There’s a cooking term for you!) I put mine in giant muffin tins which looked cool and kept the juice in.

While the oven is doing its thang dice an onion, a stick of celery and finely grate 2 carrots (I did this cos I only had 10 tomatoes and knew it wouldn’t make heaps on its own.)

Fry the onion and celery, once they’ve got going add the carrot and then some paprika powder and dried thyme (or whatever else floats your boat).

Pour in about (not counting again) a cup of boiling water and about a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. Stir it, add salt… Let it simmer. This is kinda like stock.

Pull the tomatoes out of the oven, chop out the core, roughly chop the rest, chuck EVERYTHING in the pan with the carrots, onion and water.
Squish all the hot nutty goodness from the roasted garlic into the pan as well.

Grab a stick blender thingy of your preferred brand and blend it like Beckham.

Now for more salt and cracked pepper (as you wish) (Hello Princess Bride) and the secret, secret ingredient…..because I had no tomato paste to give it oomph…..tomato sauce (ketchup) about a tablespoony squirt.

Add chopped fresh chives and basil (only cos it’s about the only thing I can’t kill in my garden).

Mix, ladle into a mug (so much more comforting than a bowl) AND it has a handle, add a splodge of cream, sour cream, plain yoghurt or Parmesan cheese and enjoy. Then enjoy another bowl. Then feel slightly ill and put the leftovers in the freezer. y u m.

I have not posted a picture of this concoction because as delicious as it sounds and tastes it does not make for visually appealing photos. You’ll just have to trust me and make it yourselves.


Go on, throw that can opener away….
Now how are we going to open the baked beans??