Sun Dried (Oven Dried) Tomatoes

October 31, 2010
San Marzano Tomatoes
Today was the last hurrah for my summer garden.  I harvested everything that I could and pulled all of the plants out.  It was a very disappointing year for tomatoes.  We had a very cool summer, and my tomatoes suffered for it.   The only tomatoes I had any luck with were my favorite plums, San Marzano.  Back in April I started these tomato plants from seed.
What to do with a big bowl of tomatoes?  Well, dry them of course.  Making your own “sun-dried” tomatoes is super easy. 

Oven Dried Tomatoes
Plum tomatoes work great for drying because they have very firm flesh with not a lot of extra liquid.  If you’re using another type of tomato, you may have to slice them thinner.  Wash the tomatoes, cut off the stem end and slice in half.  Arrange them on a parchment covered baking sheet (they will stick), and sprinkle then with a little coarse salt.
Sun Dried or Oven Dried Tomatoes
Pop them in a 200 degree oven.  They will take 4-6 hours to dry.  After about three hours, start checking them.  You want them to be dried with a chewy leathery-consistency, but not crispy. They should keep in a ziplock bag in a cool dark place for several months, but I put them in ziplock bags and freeze them.  
 
They’re chewy and delicious, just like a little bit of summer on your tongue.  Sun Dried Tomatoes I’ll be putting these on pizza, adding them to pasta and chopping them up and adding them to cream cheese for bagels this winter. 
 
Have you ever tried drying fruit?
 
I’ll be linking up this week to:  The Girl CreativeBeauty and Bedlam, An Oregon Cottage, and Life as Mom.

10 comments:

  1. Love sun dried tomatoes, how do you store them and how long do they last in storage?

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  2. I have never even thought of this! What a cool idea, I may have to try this out. I am wondering the same things as the person above me...do they last awhile?

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  3. what?! I waisted a ton of tomoatoes this year because I was so sick of canning, and freezing but this would have been great to do. So jealous you were still getting fresh veggies. Our garden has been long gone except with a few goodies that survive the crazy frosts we have been having. i will have to remember this for next year:)

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  4. I did this but in a food dehydrator. I then chopped them up into flakes and have been making a tomatoe basil bread. it taste great with sandwhiches!

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  5. These look AMAZING! This was the first year we didn't have a garden and I regret it. I definitely plan to have one next year!

    The only thing we have dried is beef jerky using the dehydrator. It is SO yummy, but it goes so quickly, yet takes so long to make. It's not worth the cost and time to have it gone in an hour! LOL

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  6. @Tami and Jen: They should keep in a ziplock bag in a cool dark place for several months, but I put them in ziplock bags and freeze them.

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  7. Beautiful tomatoes for the end of October... wish I could find one like that in my garden:) I did dry some this year in the over and I too put them in bags in the freezer. I wanted to preserve them in olive oil but got nervous as I did more reading about bacteria in the oil??? Well, the freezer is a start for me!

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  8. Those are some of the prettiest tomatoes I've ever seen. You're so lucky to have your own stock now of sun-dried tomatoes. Yummy. By the way, I'm holding a CSN giveaway on my blog and you're welcome to come by and enter. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2010/11/45-csn-giveaway.html

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  9. What a FABULOUS post! Thank you for the how-to1
    Allie

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  10. Yes- I love dried tomatoes, too. I store mine in oil, though, and dry some a little crisper to make a powder to use when I'm out of tomato paste. Thanks for linking to the Tuesday Garden Party!
    -Jami
    An Oregon Cottage

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