Monday, August 9, 2010
It has been a bumper crop of tomatoes so far this year, and it's only early August. It has been so hot, everything is early this year.
One of the things I've been doing with all these tomatoes is drying them. We have a home dehydrator (this inexpensive model, plus two extra trays), which makes it easy.
Cherry tomatoes work especially well for drying. Just cut them in half, scoop out the seeds, and place them skin side down on the trays. I find they usually dry in 9-12 hours (I generally run the dehydrator overnight, and try to pick dry days to improve the efficiency). Paste tomatoes are also good for drying. You can likewise cut them in half and seed them, but they take longer to dry because of their thicker walls. Slicer type tomatoes can work, too, though it's a bit more work. Cut them at least 1/2-inch thick and try to get out what seeds and liquid you can.
We have tomatoes in many different colors in our garden, and I enjoy looking at the pretty mix of dried ones that results - bright red, dark red, yellow, green, orange. Packaged in small jars, they also make nice gifts.