Wednesday, September 7, 2011

~Dried Tomatoes~

* Please refer to the "Ask Martha" section of September issue of Martha Stewart Living for more detailed information about tomato drying*

Last month I was in zucchini overload and now at the present moment, our kitchen has piles of tomato heaps on the counter- multitudinous quantities of tomatoes that is.  I have prepared tomatoes in many different ways but I've never even thought about drying them.  In this months Martha Stewart Living magazine, a woman asked Martha about how to make dried tomatoes.    

I was really happy to find this article, especially when my kitchen is being held hostage by these beautiful globes.  This is a great way to use of some of these fruits,especially since we recently purchased a food dehydrator.  Relatively large quantities of tomatoes can be dried in a reasonable amount of time in our new machine.  If you don't have a food dehydrator, just use your oven, as Martha suggests.  Simply oven-dry the tomatoes at 250 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking sheet if slices are very thin.  I also followed her advice about sprinkling various herbs on the tomatoes before dehydrating to add a little extra zing. This article couldn't have come at a better time!  Thanks, Martha.

Photo Gallery
Here are a just a few of our homegrown tomatoes before the drying process began.
Here are the tomato slices.  I should have cut the slices about half this size for faster and better drying.  The tomato slices were also sprinkled with thyme, oregano and a mixture of different basils from our garden.  The basils that we used here were holy basil, licorice and Genovese basil.  The spices made the dried tomatoes irresistible.  These dried tomatoes were far better than potato or corn chips and healthier too.
Here are two other varieties of tomatoes that were also dried.  
In a few hours we had ourselves several large bags of dried tomatoes with very little effort.  Ben and I found that the large slices make tasty "crackers" when paired with slices of cheese.
"A world without tomatoes is like a string quartet without violins." - Laurie Colwin

~A Late Summer Bounty~


jamie said...

I loved this article, too. One thing I would change, though, is that she says cherry or grape tomatoes can be cut in half or left whole. I wouldn't suggest leaving them whole if you're using the oven. They take hours! Even though they are quite small, if the skin stays intact, it really traps the moisture inside so it takes ages for them to finish.

The Green Mama said...

Great comment! Even with my food dryer, it took a long time for the tomatoes to dry. Thinly slicing the tomatoes is the way to go. Thanks for your advice!

Live Well,