September 27, 2018

Yotam Ottolenghi’s Charred Cherry Tomatoes With Cold Yogurt

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi

Try this recipe for Charred Cherry Tomatoes With Cold Yogurt from Yotam Ottolenghi’s new cookbook, Ottolenghi Simple.

Ottolenghi SimpleOne of the beauties of this dish lies in the exciting contrast between the hot, juicy tomatoes and fridge-cold yogurt, so make sure the tomatoes are straight out of the oven and the yogurt is straight out of the fridge. The heat of the tomatoes will make the cold yogurt melt, invitingly, so plenty of crusty sourdough or focaccia to mop it all up is a must alongside.


  • 12 ¼oz/350g cherry tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • ¾ tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp light brown sugar
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 6 oregano sprigs: 3 sprigs left whole and the rest stemmed, to serve
  • 1 lemon: finely shave the skin of  ½ to get 3 strips, then finely grate the other ½ to get 1 tsp zest
  • Flaked sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 2∕3 cups/350g extra-thick Greek-style yogurt, fridge-cold
  • 1 tsp Urfa chile flakes (or ½ tsp other crushed red pepper flakes)


Yield: Serves four as a starter

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Place the tomatoes in a mixing bowl with the olive oil, cumin, sugar, garlic, thyme, oregano sprigs, lemon strips, ½ teaspoon of flaked salt and a good grind of pepper. Mix to combine, then transfer to a baking sheet just large enough—about 6 x 8 inches/15 x 20 centimeters— to fit all the tomatoes together snugly. Place the sheet about 2 inches/5 centimeters beneath the broiler and roast for 20 minutes, until the tomatoes are beginning to blister and the liquid is bubbling. Turn the oven to the broil setting and broil for 6 to 8 minutes, until the tomatoes start to blacken on top.
  3. While the tomatoes are roasting, combine the yogurt with the grated lemon zest and ¼ tsp of flaked salt. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.
  4. Once the tomatoes are ready, spread the chilled yogurt on a platter (with a lip) or in a wide, shallow bowl, creating a dip in it with the back of a spoon. Spoon the hot tomatoes on top, along with their juices, lemon strips, garlic, and herbs, and finish with the oregano leaves and chile flakes. Serve at once.

Jonathan Lovekin


 Ottolenghi Simple by Yotoman Ottolenghi, Appetite by Random House, 2018, HC 320 pages, $42.