20 February 2008
You say tomato...
I ended up bringing home some cherry tomatoes last week (from the same event that sponsored the election rice). I wouldn't actually buy tomatoes in February in Virginia since I know that they will be tasteless pale red masses, but since they were free I didn't want to throw them out.
Neither Zach nor I are particularly huge fans of raw tomatoes even in the summertime so I knew I had to cook them somehow if we were actually going to use them. Luckily, from everything I have read, tomatoes don't loose any of their nutritional value when cooked like some other vegetables. I decided to try to make my own oven dried tomatoes. (Many so called 'sun dried tomatoes' are actually dried in ovens or kilns but 'kiln dried tomatoes' just doesn't have the same ring to it...)
As you can see, I had very few tomatoes and thought that I should try to save energy by firing up the toaster oven instead of the regular oven. I used the wire rack to elevate the tomato halves from the pan in the hopes that it would help them cook faster. I set the toaster to 250F and kept it going for about 2 and a half hours. In the end, the tomatoes had reduced to dark red disks of intense tomato flavor (though they didn't look quite so cheery as beforehand which is why there is no 'after' picture). I think that they will make their way onto pasta or perhaps into a sandwich with mozzarella and basil.