In celebration of Teacher Appreciation Week (I’m a high school art teacher as well as a food blogger, in case you didn’t know!), I’m bringing you a delicious new recipe. And in acknowledgement that it is THE CRAZIEST TIME OF YEAR for teachers everywhere, I’m going to keep this post short :-)
Guys. You can make YOUR OWN SUN DRIED TOMATOES. In the oven! And it’s the easiest thing in the world.
Here’s what’s great about these.
- Their flavor is rich and robust. They are certainly not your average tomato. There’s almost a smoky flavor that comes out of dried tomatoes that are slow roasted for a long time. And when they are smothered in a marinade of extra virgin olive oil, garlic, and fresh herbs… boy oh boy. You’ve hit the jackpot.
- They take four hours to roast in the oven (at a very low temperature), BUT, all you do is slice, sprinkle with salt, and let the oven do the work for you. Imagine how much you can get done in those four hours? The answer is a lot (but I won’t judge you if you take a nap during that time instead).
- They last for longer than fresh tomatoes. Keep them in the fridge, and they’ll be good for a few weeks.
- You can put them in everything. Salads. On sandwiches. In scrambled eggs. On pizza. I put them on a big ol’ Greek salad with lettuce, feta, olives, cucumbers, and red onions for a party, and it was a big hit.
- Did I mention they are some of the most delicious morsels of food in the world?
Here’s one thing to keep in mind: these are not going to be like the sun dried tomatoes you get at the store. These are a bit juicier- almost a cross between traditionally roasted and sun dried. In order to fully dry them, you’d have to cook them at an even lower temperature for a much longer period of time (as in, overnight), or use a food dehydrator (WANT).
So. You have two things to do. 1) Make these tomatoes, and 2) go find a teacher and give them a big ol’ hug to let them know they are appreciated. Or buy them a bottle of wine, because they probably need it (and, coincidentally, wine would go extremely well with these tomatoes!) :-)
Oven Dried Tomatoes with Garlic and Herb Oil
- 1 lb. tomatoes sliced, halved, or quartered (depending on size)
- salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs such as basil, oregano, thyme, and/or rosemary
- crushed red pepper to taste (optional)
- Place tomatoes cut side up on a parchment covered baking sheet and sprinkle with plenty of salt.
- Bake at 250 degrees F for four hours.
- Meanwhile, mix together oil, garlic, herbs, and crushed red pepper
- When tomatoes are cooled, add them to the oil mixture and stir.
- Store in refrigerated for up to two weeks, or in the freezer for up to six months.