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pan con tomate


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I just got back from Madrid, and had some amazing pan con tomate, frequently with a Vermut for <2 euros that was vastly better than anything I've had before - even in other parts of Spain. So.. what's the secret? The bread was great, cripsy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bocadillo, but the tomatoes as well. They certainly seem to have a huge variety of tomatoes (not like a cherry and beef) - maybe it's that - produe quality. But so cheap? I've made it a few times at home and it's always been OK, nothing amazing.

Anyone had success creating a truly awesome pan con tomate?

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I don't think the bread is stale, it's just the spanish bread I linked above. Stale bread would work fine too and historically has been used. The rubbing method sort of works (where you rub the tomato on the bread) but it's quite a different dish to grating the tomato and putting it on top.

I've had a few goes at this now with a variety of tomatoes - so quick and delicious. Haven't had a chance to pick up anything too fancy though, a few things that seem to work well is (after draining some of the water from the grated tomato) mixing the oil and the salt together with it (not drizzling it on top). Much more consistent. I use nunez de prado oil, but I think any really good olive oil would work.

I'm going to try mincing the garlic and mixing it in instead of rubbing the garlic on top, which i'm sure everyone is very excited about.

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So are you making bruschetta instead?

No, that's chunky https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=tomato+rubbed&espv=2&biw=1920&bih=911&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0CAgQ_AUoA2oVChMIiNKou9W6xwIVZBfbCh1HXgs9#tbm=isch&q=bruschetta. I'm talking a relatively fine paste that you get when you use a box grater to grate some tomatoes.

I made this for lunch today http://imgur.com/zJmsNkT

Here's a random rubbed with tomato bit of bread: http://www.americulinariska.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Barcelona-tomato-bread.png - looks fine but not enough T for me.

Here's some PCT I had in madrid - http://imgur.com/D80Dyno

I imagine for bulk they use a processor. I think the rubbing the tomatoes on bread thing is just a bit of a shortcut.. but it's not consistent.

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I tried some of this today. Lovely stuff. Clearly using a blender is the way to go when making a few. about half a clove per tomato or so in the blender.

I am going to get some good quality passata and see if that tastes good, as tomatoes here in the UK are incredibly inconsistent.

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You tried growing your own tomatoes?

All the home-grown tomatoes I've had in the UK have been a bit crappy. A friend who grew them for a few years told me that most of the really tasty kinds are tricky to grow and don't ripen well in Britain's climate. By comparison, the ones most people grow in the UK are rather bland and watery and tend to have quite thick skins (this being useful for repelling insects and making them more robust to look after.)
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i lived in spain for 4 years and really enjoyed pan tumaca also, but there are so many ways of making it.

Some people were just blending the tomatoes (peeled) but to me, this just results in the base for gazpacho.

What we used to do was grate the tomatoes over a colander - the skin of the tomato is what protects your fingers. I'd add some extra virgin olive oil and some coarsely grated salt and gently mix in.

The bread would be the more difficult part so we would buy a bruschetta and oven toast it and then rub raw garlic on it.

Some places put jamon on the tomato once it was spread on the bread.

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