Makes 8 servings
3 pints cherry tomatoes
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon sugar
Kosher salt and black pepper
8 garlic cloves, unpeeled
8 fresh thyme sprigs
2 1⁄2 to 3 pounds asparagus, trimmed
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. On a large, rimmed baking sheet, toss cherry tomatoes with 2 tablespoons olive oil, sugar, and 1⁄2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Add garlic cloves to pan. Arrange thyme sprigs over tomatoes.
3. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and mash lightly with fork to release juices. Return to oven and bake 20 minutes longer, or until tomatoes are very tender. Leave oven on.
4. Remove and discard thyme sprigs (some leaves will remain
on baking sheet, which is fine). Remove garlic and set aside to cool for 5 minutes. Scrape tomato mixture into a bowl. Squeeze pulp from garlic cloves into tomato mixture.
5. Divide asparagus between 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over each pan of asparagus. Sprinkle each pan evenly with 1⁄4 teaspoon salt, and toss to coat. Spread asparagus into single layers and bake for 13 to 15 minutes, or just until tender.
6. To serve, spoon tomato mixture over asparagus and season with salt and pepper.