drying tomatoes

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by fordson major, Jan 23, 2005.

  1. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

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    has anyone tried this? was reading a magazine article on drying tomatoes and it sounds like it could be profitable. what were the best varietys?was thinking beefsteak and plumb but open to ideas. hoping to use the ruth stout mulch method
     
  2. bonnie lass

    bonnie lass Semper Fi

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    I'm growing principe borghese this year for drying. I haven't grown them before, but I understand that this is the main tomato used for drying in Italy. Sun-dried tomatos, yum :)
     

  3. dakani

    dakani Well-Known Member

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    I dried plum tomatoes last year in the dehydrater and they came out fine. Stuck some in jars with olive oil and herbs (chili, oregano). They look beautiful - actually seem to shine - so it's almost a shame to open the jars and eat them, but they are yummy.
     
  4. diane

    diane Well-Known Member

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    I have dryed them for years. The paste types give the best product imo......like Romas ect.
     
  5. Marcia in MT

    Marcia in MT Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I dry a paste/roma type called "Macero II." It's larger than regular romas, and earlier, to boot. My dehydrator holds about 11 lbs. of tomatoes, and takes about 24 hours to dry a load. First thing in the morning, I wash the fruit, cut them into rounds about half an inch thick, pack each tray as closely as possible, and turn the temperature up as high as it'll go. At lunch, I rotate trays, and again at bedtime. I also turn down the temperature to pretty low at this point. By morning, they're usually brittle dry and I pack them into jars.

    I'd love to sell them, but the county sanitarian says that since they're "processed" by cutting them up, I would need to do everything in a certified kitchen to be able to sell to the public. I'm thinking about taking this to the state sanitarian, as I'm taking an acidic product and making it even *less* conducive to bacterial growth by taking all the water out, so I don't see that there's really a risk by doing it at home. Wish me luck!
     
  6. bugstabber

    bugstabber Chief cook & weed puller Supporter

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    I have dried cherry tomatoes, when they were too plentiful.
     
  7. rio002

    rio002 Well-Known Member

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    I dried beefsteaks and early girls last year--stuck them in a jar with a saltine cracker (for moisture control) and they are stil just wonderful to add into sauces, stews etc. They do stay nice and pretty the whole time and the smell opening the glass canister is amazing!
     
  8. Jenn

    Jenn Well-Known Member Supporter

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    And how and why are they safe stored however you store 'em? Air in package so if not moldy it's ok? Had some lovely ones from the market and want to know how to do it myself- how do you oil pack them?
     
  9. rio002

    rio002 Well-Known Member

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    Jenn--Moisture creates mold, rot etc. when you completely dry a food you remove all moisture, and then just as an added precaution when I store mine in a regular glass canister with a plastic sealer on the lid I also put in a saltine cracker to absorb any left over moisture, which by then is miniscule. My glass container is certainly not air tight, but you can store anything dried is pretty much any container, thorough drying in the beginning is the key to long term storage success. Good Luck!
     
  10. BobK

    BobK Well-Known Member

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    We dry lots of tomatoes for our own use not to sell. We've dried a few different varieties and found them all to be good. Our favorite use is dried tomatoe/basil pesto....great on anything but it makes a exceptional pizza sauce....especially combined with your own sourdough pizza dough.
     
  11. Jenn

    Jenn Well-Known Member Supporter

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    At the Saturday market last week I bought some from a young Syrian man. There were two types, one brighter red than the other, both in oil. "These are sundried and these are sun mumble" he said. "Sun WHAT?" I asked twice and he finally embarassedly said "Sun BLUSHED"- dried more slowly or something. Guess he doesn't like the choice of name LOL!
     
  12. crashy

    crashy chickaholic goddess

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    If you dry the tomatos then put them in olive oil do you have to water bath them? If not how long do they last in just the oil?
     
  13. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I just always slice the tomatoes and slap them on the dehydrator trays. I've always had great success with any variety I've dried. I put them into glass jars or vacuum seal them. If there's freezer space, I'll pop them in there, but that's just an extra added precaution -- as quickly as they go around here, I'm not overly concerned about them going bad!

    Maybe I will try putting them in oil this season. A little basil and oregano tucked in sounds good, too.

    I don't think you can/should water bath product in oil, but <shrug> that's just my guess. The only thing I've put in oil around here is goat cheese, but I keep that in the fridge.

    Pony!