Cooking by Photos - Homemade Semi-Dried Tomatoes


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Brisbane, Australia
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I think that it was some time ago now that Luke posted an illustrated guide to making a salsa, so when I tried making some semi-dried tomatoes at home recently I kept a camera at the ready. The term cooking is used pretty loosely here because these are dead easy to make but the results are still delicious.

To start I bought a medley mix of small tomatoes for some colour, but you can use whatever you want really. Roma tomatoes or grape tomatoes are good to use because when cut the pieces are long and thin and therefore easy to dehydrate. Depending on the size of the tomatoes you might cut them in halves, thirds, quarters or more; you can use the first photo as a guide. I place a thin wire rack over an oven tray with some baking paper in between to keep the tray clean. Place the tomatoes on the rack with the cut side up and season with salt and pepper and herbs (I use dried oregano). For a last touch I add a drop of olive oil over each piece of tomato.


With the minimal prep work over you place the tray into an oven preheated to 150 degree celsius (300 degrees fahrenheit). Cooking time might be up to 2.5hrs if your pieces of tomato are large or you like to make them just a little crispy. I take mine out just short of 2hrs. After coming out of the oven they can be left to cool down on the bench. The eagle-eyed amongst you might notice from the first and second photos that they are not from the same batch.


Now comes the genius of making semi-dried tomatoes. After using the oven to take out the water you then replace it with olive oil :). Into the glass jar of oil and tomatoes I add some chilis and garlic for extra flavour.


To serve just remove however many tomatoes you want from the jar and place them in a bowl with a little of the oil. I like to eat them with cheese, crackers, olives, smoked oysters, cured meats, etc, and also in salads or on pizzas.


Just remember to be careful of those chilis! (it may be safer to leave them in the jar)


Unfortunately I can't tell you how long they will last in the oil as I haven't been able to leave them uneaten for longer than a week so far.

¡Buen provecho!

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