May We Recommend: Oven-Dried Tomatoes | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

May We Recommend: Oven-Dried Tomatoes

Oven-Dried Tomatoes (Melanie Young)

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Fresh tomato season may be ending but there are cooking techniques to coax out the sweet flavors from what’s is left in the bins. One simple way is to slow-roast. Depending on the length of time spent in the oven, slow-roasted tomatoes can range from soft and juicy to chewy like a sun-dried version. Since I find that many packages of sun-dried tomatoes have preservatives, I prefer making my own. I bought a box of plum tomatoes at my local farm stand and started experimenting. Fresh plum tomatoes become sweeter when drizzled with olive oil and herbs de Provence and slow cooked at a low temperature in the oven. The sweet tomato aroma coming from the oven fills you with anticipation.  

I prefer plum or Roma tomatoes for their firm flesh and low water content. Slice tomatoes into one-third to one-half inch disks (not too thin since they shrink) and place side-by-side on a large baking pan, ideally with a lip to catch any oil drippings. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, and your choice of dried herbs. Cook in a 250-degree oven for two hours or until you achieve the desired texture without charring the edges. Stick with “low and slow” for best results; I tried this recipe at 300 degrees for less time and burned the tomatoes.

Enjoy as a sweet tomato snack or use as a pizza topping, in pasta, or in chicken dishes. You can store them in a sealed contain lined with brown paper for a few days, but they will probably go fast!

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