There is something about this time of year that makes me want to simplify my meals. But unlike many people who are ready to move on to green salads, I still want comfort food. It doesn’t have to be unhealthy comfort food. I just want a little something that is warm and filling.
I picked up some beautiful grape tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market this past weekend, but given my comfort food craving, I didn’t want them cold. Roasting them seemed like the perfect solution. And when I combined them with some slightly wilted arugula and black beans, the tomatoes got even better.
This is just about the simplest lunch you can imagine, but it fits all the requirements of comfort food while incorporating some lighter ingredients.
Roasted Tomato, Black Bean and Arugula Salad Recipe
2 cups grape tomatoes
¾ tsp dried basil
½ tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp crushed red pepper
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
1 ½ cups arugula
2 cups black beans, warmed
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spread the grape tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet. Spray or drizzle lightly with olive oil. Use just enough to lightly coat each tomato. Sprinkle the basil, oregano, red pepper, salt and pepper over the tomatoes.
Roast until the tomatoes begin to burst, about 10 minutes. (You can also use your broiler for a similar result.) Remove from the oven and immediately lay the arugula over the tomatoes to wilt it slightly.
Add the black beans to a medium-sized bowl, stir in the tomatoes and arugula. Add more salt or pepper to taste, if desired. Serve warm. Makes 4 servings.
Lori Rice is a freelance writer, recipe developer, food photographer and nutritional scientist. Fake Food Free is a creative outlet that allows her to connect with people from around the world who share a love of travel, food culture and cooking.