Saturday, September 24, 2011

Recipe: Oven Dried Tomatoes

Oven-Dried Tomatoes 

Thank you to Nicki M. for supplying this recipe.

(photo: Nicki McCracken)
Whether you eat them as is, or pack them in an herbed oil, these tomatoes are flavorful and versatile. You can oven dry any tomato variety; each of the quantities given below generally fills one baking pan.
Martha Stewart Living, September 1998 

Yield:  Serves 4


24 cherry tomatoes 
- or - 
8 to 10 plum tomatoes, cut in half
- or - 
8 to 10 yellow, orange, red, or green tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick or thicker slices

1 tablespoon sugar
Herbs, such as basil, oregano, or rosemary, to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 200 - 250 degrees. Line a quarter-sheet pan or cookie sheet with parchment. For thinnest chips, use a Silpat baking mat. Arrange tomatoes, cut sides up, on pan, spaced 1/2 to 1 inch apart. Sprinkle with sugar and herbs; season with salt and pepper.

Transfer pan to oven; dry until juices have stopped running, edges are shriveled, and pieces have shrunken slightly; timing will vary depending on the variety, ripeness, and desired degree of dryness, 1 1/2 to 6 hours. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cook's notes: Don't be surprised how long these take to cook! A couple of my batches took up to 8 hours in a 200 degree oven-- I think the 1.5 hour time range is unrealistic. 

I used a variety of tomatoes and just sliced them to the same thickness: 1/4" to 1/2". I didn't use herbs, but I did add several cloves of peeled garlic on one batch. I used a Silpat liner on one pan and nothing on another and noticed little difference. I also didn't bother with the precise spacing of the tomato slices-- I just threw them all in the pan and made sure they weren't touching.

I read a few different recipes for oven-dried tomatoes and the consensus is that they will keep "forever" in a ziplock bag in the freezer. I haven't tried the in-oil storage method. Some recipes called for removing the seeds before drying, but I think that's unnecessary. Also, some recipes did not use sugar.



main ingredients: 
tomato, salt, pepper, sugar, herbs

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