12 hours
makes about 1 quart
Among all the ways to preserve tomatoes, this one is the easiest: slice tomatoes, drizzle with oil, and roast in a very slow oven for many hours. The oven dried tomatoes can be packed in oil or frozen in convenient portions for use throughout the winter.
  • 4 quarts or one half-peck Roma (paste) tomatoes (about 6.5 pounds)
  • drizzle olive oil

Preheat oven to 175˚F, or its lowest setting. Wash tomatoes to remove any dust, and dry them. Line two half-sheet pans with parchment paper.

Cut the tomatoes in half lengthwise. Place cut side up on the pans; you should have enough to just fill two half-sheet pans. Drizzle the cut tomatoes very lightly with olive oil.

Place pans in oven. Roast overnight to dry, until the tomatoes are chewy, not crisp. This may take as long as 24 hours, depending on just how much moisture was in the tomatoes.

Check tomatoes periodically and taste test. When done, the tomatoes should feel leathery but still pliable, and not at all brittle. They should not be sticky.

Let the tomatoes cool. Package in zipper bags or jars, and freeze for up to 6 months. You may also pack in olive oil in small jars, leaving one-half inch headspace, and freeze for up to 6 months. The oil will take on a rosy hue and tomato flavor, don’t toss it out when the tomatoes are used up!

 

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