Anybody else like air-dried tomatoes?
- lisavf Mar 2, 2011 09:42 AM
I like to buy grape tomatoes for my salads, but I only use three or four at a time, and I don't make salad every day, more like two or three times a week. Since the grape tomatoes are sold by the pint, I end up with lots of tomatoes that just sit for a long time. As they sit on the counter over time, they start to dry up like a raisin. I used to throw them away because I thought they were going bad (sometimes they would get moldy and mushy). But at some point I decided to just keep eating them, even though they were all wrinkly, as long as they were not mushy or moldy. YUM! They get sweet and chewy the longer they sit, which is great by me because the liquidy center is the part of the tomato I don't like. Now I buy a new pint of tomatoes when I'm about halfway through the old container, just so that they will start to dry out before I'm ready to eat them.
Anyone else like their tomatoes this way?
Yep. It's a way to get supermarket tomatoes to taste more like tomatoes. You just have to be sure they are well ventillated so they don't get mushy, just wizened.
In 2008 I had about 300 extra cherry tomato plants - both yellow and red varieties. Before the birds could enjoy I would pick cut in half and immediately dry them in the ovens on tin foil on very low heat then vacuum seal and freeze. From the time they are picked to the time they are in the oven was under an hour. I recall them taking about half a day or more to dry per batch and that I would check them often to make sure drying and not cooking. Found removing the water intensifies flavors. Ground ground up into a rough powder would sure zoom up the top of most any Italian red sauce over pasta. Wish still had some in my freezer. Thank you for the great memory. Now my mouth is watering.
Commercial tomatoes are often picked green and ripen to the retailer. I find the flavors from the store are not as good as the flavors out of the garden. Knowing where every item on your plate comes from is best, while not always possible. To help out store bought tomatoes slice them kinda thick and put on tinfoil covered cookie sheet in a low oven to dry out and concentrate flavors. Possibly with a bit of salt, pepper, and sprinkle of fresh oregano / basil. These funny looking slices of dried out tomato zip up a sandwich - a favorite on BLTs. Garden tomatoes when in season with their concentrated flavors this way are awesome.