Sun-dried Tomatoes

September 18, 2011 § 1 Comment

I lied a little bit…

These tomatoes aren’t sun-dried, but they are dried & they are so simple. I wanted to post this yesterday so that those of you who frequent the local farmers markets could stock up on one of the last batches of summertime tomatoes, then come home and dry them. But I never got around to it. My apologies, hopefully you did buy tomatoes & didn’t eat all of them for dinner.

There are two things I will stress about this recipe, which is so simple it only calls for one ingredient & an oven.  1) Do not salt the tomatoes. I know this might seem counter-intuitive, but as you dry them, the flavor becomes so highly concentrated that salt will make them unbearable. 2) The tomatoes need to be at cut between 1/4 – 1/3 of an inch thick. If they aren’t cut thick enough they will literally disappear in the oven, leaving behind only their seeds.

Sun-dried Tomatoes

5-7 large paste or Brandywine tomatoes (any other fleshy tomatoes will work), sliced into 1/4 of an inch thick slices

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not coat the baking stone with oil before putting the sliced tomatoes on it. Lay the sliced tomatoes side by side on the stone and bake for 10-12 hours.

These come out wonderful. Yes, they do take a long time, but if you put them in the oven before you go to bed & check them when you wake up, they should be all set. I store mine in a mason jar. If you are going to use them right away you don’t have to refrigerate them, but if you are saving them for any more then 3 weeks, stick them in the refrigerator.

Sun-dried tomatoes are a simple addition to salads & are great mixed into some tuna with mayo. These flavorful morsels work well on toasted bread with a tangy raw goat cheese & are especially yummy on grilled Gruyère  cheese sandwiches. Also, try using the dried tomatoes when you are making broth, because they are so concentrated, they can handle being used like a spice (maybe to flavor a risotto).

Enjoy them throughout the winter, inflecting your hearty creations with a small taste of summer.

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