Identifiable by their oblong shape, Roma or other varieties of “paste” tomato are more fleshy, and less juicy, than slicing tomatoes, making them a great pick for making sauces and for dehydrating.

INGREDIENTS

3 lbs Roma or “paste” tomatoes
Salt

STEPS
Preheat oven to 170°F.  While the oven heats, slice tomatoes in half, lengthwise. Remove tomato stems and core the fruits (pro tip: Wusthof’s tomato knife is fantastic, and well worth the investment). Arrange cored tomato halves, cut side up, on a nonreactive baking sheet or oven-proof ceramic dish. Sprinkle lightly with salt.

Cook tomatoes in low-heat oven 6 – 8 hours, checking periodically. Tomatoes are done when there is no visible moisture or gel; fruits will have a pliable but not spongy texture. As juiciness and size of tomatoes will vary, some tomatoes may be ready before others. Remove “sun”-dried tomatoes from baking dish to a cool plate and allow to cool completely.

Once cooled, the dried tomatoes can be stored in a resealable bag and stored in the freezer, where they will keep almost indefinitely.

Or, if you like your sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil (or you just love the added treat of your own tomato-infused oil), layer dried tomatoes in a clean, lidded jar.  Pour olive oil over tomatoes until just covered. Lightly press on tomatoes to remove any air bubbles, and screw lid on tightly. Store at room temperature.

AllSpicer Chad says: sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil, beg for fresh herbs and garlic. If you choose to make any additions to the jar, store your oil mixture in the refrigerator and use within three weeks.

From the kitchen of AllSpicer Chad.

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