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Oven Dried Tomatoes

a bowl filled with oven dried tomatoes on a wooden table with a fresh tomato at the side

I have a veggie patch, and at the moment, I have an abundance of zucchini and tomatoes.  If you are bored eating them raw, why not switch them up a bit, and preserve some.  I eat tomatoes pretty much every day and even though I grow them, I still have to purchase them.  You could say I love them.

My favourite is the small Solanato from Woolworths.  They’re packed with flavour, crunch when you bite into the outer skin and are juicy.  Their flesh is so flavourful I have them almost every day with a salad for lunch.  I must try to grow some from seed this season.

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Which tomatoes are best for drying?

Roma is the best variety for this job.  Its flesh is dense, has a good flavour, and will dry beautifully. Cut the tomatoes in half lengthways and place cut –side up on a cooling rack over an oven tray.  Sprinkle the tomatoes lightly with salt and any herbs you would like to use.  Dry in the oven on the lowest possible setting for 3 – 6 hours for semi sundried and 6 – 8 hours for dried or until the tomatoes feel dry when you touch them.  Or if you have a dehydrator use that of course.

Such variety available in tomatoes!

Once cool pack them into hot sterilised jars and pour enough good quality olive oil over the tomatoes to completely cover them.  Semi-dried will last in your fridge for a week to 10 days although if you choose to dry them a little further, they will keep for about a month.

Of course, you could also make some of my BBQ tomato sauce if you have an abundance.  This sauce is pretty popular at the cooking school.

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