I’m a sun-dried tomato lovin’ freak and jarred sun-dried tomatoes are usually expensive to buy on the regular. During these awesome Summer months tomatoes are growing like crazy and even the Amish are selling them by the boxes on the side of the road out here. I scored a massive box for $8.00 and turned them into sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil. It’s so easy to do you don’t even have to use your thinking brain. LOL
I feel like I say this in every recipe blog but it’s true… again! You can put these things in EVERYTHING! Salads, a fresh pasta dish, over baked chicken with feta and other goodies. Blend it up with other ingredients you love to make a sun-dried tomato spread for crostini, pizza, sandwiches or as a dip… chop them up and put it in my Quiche Cupcakes! Or munch on them as is… because they’re just that good. Even healthy for you. What can’t you do with these things?
Okay, here we go! I’ve been using large tomatoes but you can even use a smaller one like a Roma tomato. Just remember though, the small the faster they’ll take to dry out. I slice the end where the stem was, throw that away and cut the tomato in quarters like this:
Then take each quarter and slice them length-wise to about a 1/4 inch – 1/3 inch thick. Also make sure you trim any white/unripened part of the core. The slices should look kinda like this:
Once they’re done in the dehydrator get comfortable at a table and dip them in red wine vinegar, shaking off the excess and then placing them in a mason jar. The vinegar helps retain a longer shelf life by increasing it’s acidity level as well as a flavor enhancer to the tomato. This step of course is optional.
HOMEMADE SUN-DRIED TOMATOES
If your tomatoes are medium to large in size then cut them in quarters and then slice each quarter into 1/4" - 1/3" slices.
Spray your dehydrator trays with olive oil cooking spray to prevent the tomatoes from sticking. Lay out the slices with about a 1/4" space between each one. Turn the dehydrator on at 135 degrees and let sit for at least 6 hours.
Check on them after 4 hours to see if the smaller ones need to be removed. You can rotate the trays as well. For larger slices, they can take up to 8 hours. You don't want them to be completely dehydrated. A chewy texture is ideal.
Once your tomatoes are done, set up an assembly on a table with the tomatoes, red wine vinegar in a small bowl and mason jars. Simply dip each sun-dried tomato into the red wine vinegar and shake the excess off, then place into a mason jar. Once the jars are packed full, pour extra virgin olive oil until it reaches the top of the tomatoes.
Seal and store for when you're ready to use. Refrigeration always extends it's shelf life but isn't mandatory.