[Photograph: Blake Royer]

While October might be pushing it for "late summer," farmers' markets can still be counted on for inexpensive, past-their-prime tomatoes. And those are perfectly suited for the treatment they get in this wonderful soup, from the Saltie cookbook: a slow roast with olive oil to concentrate their acidity and sweetness. Along with garlic, sage, and rosemary, they're the heart of this spare and satisfying soup.

Why I Picked This Recipe: It's a perfect time of year for soups, and this vegetarian recipe's use of concentrated tomatoes, plenty of garlic, and woodsy herbs sizzled in olive oil made for an intriguing combination.

What Worked: The simplicity of this recipe is wonderful, and the steps work out nicely to allow most of it to be prepared while the tomatoes are roasting, keeping the prep and cook time short.

What Didn't: The tomatoes weren't quite as caramelized as I'd hoped in the recommended time and oven temperature; an adjustment to either might yield more deeply flavored results.

Suggested Tweaks: Fregola is a type of pasta that can be hard to find, but Israeli couscous is a perfect substitute, as is farro or another grain.

Adapted from Saltie: A Cookbook.

About the author: Blake Royer has been writing for Serious Eats since 2007. He is the Creative Director at Jamco Creative in Chicago. You can follow him on Twitter: @blakeroyer.

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