Thursday, August 18, 2011

Oven-dried Tomatoes

I love tomatoes. Not just any tomato. I love cooked tomatoes. I used to stand by a pot of anything that had tomatoes in it - soup, pasta sauce, whatever, so I could eat stir it. (I also love to stir things, but we'll save that for another time.)

Last summer, I had the most delicious salad. One of the amazing ingredients was oven-dried tomatoes. That is the first time I tasted them, and it was love at first bite. They were full of the yummy tomato flavor I love. I even like them better than sun-dried tomatoes. A whole lot better, and I like sun-dried tomatoes pretty well.

When I received some beautiful tomatoes in my produce basket one week, I decided to make my own oven-dried tomatoes.

I couldn't decide if I wanted to slice thin or in wedges so I did both. First, I placed the slices on paper towels to absorb some of the juice. Then I tossed them with a bit of olive oil, some chopped garlic, and salt & pepper. I put them in the oven at 200 degrees. I checked on them every 30-45 minutes and would turn them over as needed. Due to the varying thickness of my tomato slices, some were done sooner, so I just took them out along the way. The thickest ones took about 5 hours. The wedges held up better over time, but the slices looked really pretty.

I ended up with extremely flavorful little tomatoes. I could have eaten the whole pan right there. I decided to put the in a jar covered with olive oil, rosemary, and basil. They looked so pretty in the jar.

Over the next few weeks I used them in pasta dishes and on sandwiches. I will say when eating simply eating them, I liked them much better before they were drenched in olive oil. The olive oil has a nice flavor and has made a great addition to pasta sauces and salads though.

I can't wait to make them again.
This is such a great way to use up all those garden tomatoes.

I have a yummy salad recipe using these beauties to share with you soon.

What's your favorite way to eat a tomato?

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