I get a little spoilt with homegrown tomatoes as it is one of my fathers passions, i have made bottles of ketchup, pasta sauce, relishes and eaten far too many fresh tomato sandwiches! Now i am into semi drying them in the oven and the reason i am opting for the oven method is obviously we don't get enough endless days of hot sunshine to dry them outside. However the oven method is easy and you don't have to fret about the weather changing and your tomatoes getting wet and soggy or stuck with bugs.
If you have the good fortune of having a variety of tomatoes then by all means dry a selection as it will make a fabulous addtion to any dish. I have used large and small, some with seeds and some removed.
1 kg tomatoes
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp fine salt
a few sprigs thyme, oregano or a few bay leaves crumbled
2-3 Tbsp olive oil, plus extra for storage
fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Halve the tomatoes and scoop out and discard the seeds, as i mentioned i did some with and some without. Stand a cooling rack (wire rack) over a tray.
Mix the sugar and salt together in a small bowl. Sprinkle a tiny pinch of this mixture over th inside of each tomato half, then put the tomatoes upside down on the rack. Leave for 1 hour to remove excess juice.
Preheat oven to very low, 100C lower if fan bake.
Turn over the tomatoes and place the rack over a baking tray, scatter with the herbs a little pepper adn the olive oil. Place in the oven and dry slowly for up to 4-6 hours, do however check after an hour or two as your oven may be a little hotter than you thought.
When they have shrivelled a little and 'semi-dried' remove from the oven and store covered with a little more olive oil.
They will keep for about 3-5 days in your fridge (longer if dried more). Add them to any number of dishes.