what to do with an overkill of grape tomatoes – oven dried tomatoes

I am currently able to pick a colander of these grape tomatoes every day from our garden. As we did last year, I think we may have gone slightly overboard with the tomato plants. Last year we had more than 30 tomato plants, this year we have that many plus the volunteer plants that came up between the rows. So..

I wanted to try out oven drying some tomatoes. We use them all of the time as pizza toppings and I’ve used them occasionally on pasta, so it seemed reasonable to make them myself. And other than the time involved in the baking, it is just about the easiest thing you can possibly make. This batch (two full cookie sheets worth) made enough for some quick snacking straight out of the oven and I’ll keep the rest in the fridge for use on pizzas over the next week or two. Once my roma tomatoes are ripe, I’ll do this again several more times and put the results in the freezer to last through the winter.

And this is all that you do:

Sun Oven Dried Tomatoes

  • tomatoes (I used grape, will try again with romas, but you can probably use any small, ripe tomato)
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped basil (optional)

Slice the tomatoes lengthwise and place cut side up on a baking sheet. You can use parchment paper or a silpat, but I didn’t with the tiny little tomatoes and they didn’t stick at all (larger tomatoes might). Sprinkle with salt and pepper and chopped basil (if you want) and pop into a 200F oven until they’ve reached a dried, fruit leathery stage. I’d read that small tomatoes should only take 2-3 hours, but mine took 5 hours with the convection fan on.  It will take even longer for larger tomatoes. Start early in the day and let them go all day long if you need to. Make lots, because you will immediately eat half of them right out of the oven. They really are that good.

Linked to I Did It Tuesday, A Pinch of Joy, Frugally Sustainable, This Chick Cooks, Simple Lives Thursday, A Pinch of Joy, A Delightful Home, Foy Update – Eat, Make, Grow, Gastronomical Sovereignty

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34 thoughts on “what to do with an overkill of grape tomatoes – oven dried tomatoes

  1. those look amazing. makes me long for the days i had time for a garden!!!

  2. Oh, I’m so jealous of your over-supply of the cherry tomatoes! Ours are lacking. Recipe looks delish.

  3. Never heard of doing that….guess it’s just with small tomatoes? Diane

    • No, you could do it with any kind – roma or small tomatoes would be best, but you could probably do it with field tomatoes (you might need to take some seeds out of field tomatoes to make them less wet).

  4. Linda says:

    This is a really good idea…hope to try something similar next time I have an over abundance of cherry tomatoes.

  5. Perfect timing! I will try this today. My colander is over flowing.

  6. Somer says:

    I keep thinking I need a dehydrator for things like this! Love it!

    • I would love to find a second hand dehydrator too someday (probably not going to go out and buy a one use wonder toy at full price though). Until then, I’ll just have to do it this way. Seems to work just fine.

  7. PJ Girl says:

    I love slow roasted tomatoes! Unfortunately my crop is very small this year so I’m just eating them of the vine 🙂

  8. love your comment about the volunteer tomato plants – and I am going to oven dry some tomatoes this year and when I do I will tell you, because I am always very proud of myself when I do something domestic

  9. Sarah says:

    OMGosh these look so good Heidi. Thank you for sharing…what a great idea! My tomato plants are taking over the yard, so this is great!

  10. I do something similar – just roast them whole and run them through my food processor to make sauce. Roasting them always makes the flavor soooo much better! Great idea!

  11. arzea says:

    Wow this looks so easy and delicious! I never knew you could even do this!!!

  12. oceannah says:

    Delicious. We have scaled way way back on tomatoes. Unfortunately the sungolds I planted by the gate have all been nibbled up by the chickens who figured out how to stick their heads through the fence! I love dried toms for winter.
    *anna

  13. Great idea, wish I had an oven just for these. Guess I could borrow my DIL oven.

  14. Lauren says:

    I love oven-drying tomatoes. Too bad I won’t have enough of a harvest this year to do some. I’m jealous of your overkill of tomato plants!

  15. […] and I have visited with friends, we’ve prepared peaches for the freezer and made some more oven-dried tomatoes. This time I took the suggestion of Diane at Westlake Musings (who resides in a neighbouring […]

  16. Tried these yesterday with regular sized tomatoes sliced (oven roasted about 6 hours) and they were absolutely delicious. Used them warm on grilled burgers….using the rest chilled in salad. Very easy recipe and almost as good as chocolate! Thanks.
    You were right about eating them right out of the oven!

    • I’m glad you liked them. I can’t believe that I never made them before this year – except for the cooking time, they really are so easy, and taste so good (and cost nothing, as opposed to buying the expensive store bought variety).

  17. […] This is the time of year when I get lots of tomatoes from my farm share.  They don’t all come at once, though, so I need to use them up four or five pounds at a time.  Over the past few weeks, I’ve made gazpacho, tomato sauce, and Panzanella.  Last week I froze my tomatoes because I didn’t have time to use them before we went away.  One of my favorite toppings for pasta is sun-dried tomatoes, so this week I made oven roasted tomatoes.  This method was adapted from a recipe in the cookbook, The Homemade Pantry, as well as from Heidi’s technique at Lightly Crunchy. […]

  18. Finally a recipe that doesn’t require dehydrator. they look fantastic!!!

  19. […] peppers (chopped or cut in strips), marinara sauce and oven roasted tomato sauce. I’ve made oven-dried tomatoes, 2 more gallons of pickles and started to ferment some jalapeno peppers to make my own hot sauce. […]

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