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Saving your small Tomatoes

English: Super Sweet 100 Cherry Tomatoes

Anyone that has a garden more than likely planted some type of small tomato such as the grape tomato or cherry tomato or even the Roma plum tomato.  If you had any luck with your plants you more than likely have more tomatoes than you can eat!  So the big question is, “is there a way of saving your small tomatoes for later use”?”

When I have more cherry or grape tomatoes than I can eat before they go bad, I keep them.  How do I do that?  Well I roast them!  I love the versatility and ease of use of roasted tomatoes.  Roasted tomatoes are similar to sun dried tomatoes.  You can use these tasty treats in just about any dish.  They are great in salads, in stews and soups, toss a few in your favorite pasta dish, on bread with some cheese, or just plain.  You will be pleasantly surprised by the wonderful flavor they add to your favorite meal.

So, how do you roast a small tomato?  The process is easier than you think.  Be sure to wash your small tomatoes and remove the stems.  Pick out any spotted, green, or rotting tomatoes (only use the best for the best flavors).  Simply cut the tomatoes in half and place on a sheet pan (cut side up) that has been lightly oiled with olive oil.  Next drizzle a little olive oil over your tomatoes and sprinkle with coarse salt and your favorite garden herbs (I like to use oregano, basil, and a little garlic powder).  That’s it, they are ready to roast!  But before I stick these in the oven, let me just say this is not a defined recipe.  Be adventurous, try different things.  How about a different herb or spice?  Rosemary or thyme pair up nicely or try adding whole garlic cloves instead of the garlic powder.  You can store the roasted garlic with your tomatoes giving them a wonderful flavor, not to mention the wonderful taste of the roasted garlic all by itself!  …YUM.  So go ahead season the tomatoes any way you like or just leave them plain (I would suggest keeping the oil though just to keep them from sticking to the pan).
Ok, now that they are cut and seasoned the way you like lets get roasting!  Pre-heat your oven to 225°F.  Don’t worry, it’s a low heat and won’t heat up your kitchen.  Place the sheet pan(s) of cut and seasoned tomatoes in your oven and roast for about 3 hours (depends on size and quantity).  You will see a slight carmelization and they will shrivel a bit but still be somewhat soft in the centers.  That’s it!  The roasted tomatoes are ready to eat!  Serve them, as is, warm or cool or in your favorite dish.  “But I still can’t eat this many tomatoes, can I keep them?”  These little gems will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, just place them in a clean jar and add more olive oil just to cover the tomatoes.  Still can’t eat that many?  Spread them on a sheet pan and place them in the freezer, when they are frozen, seal them in a zip-lock bag and freeze for up to a year without loosing any quality.  When you want to use them just pull them out of the freezer and add to your favorite dish.
You won’t believe how easy these are to make and how delicious they really are!  The flavor is so incredible you will wonder why you haven’t done this all along.

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3 Responses to Saving your small Tomatoes

  1. Felicia August 15, 2014 at 7:42 pm #

    Tomatoes, to-mah-toes. However you say it, these are my favorite summer food!

  2. Claribel November 12, 2013 at 2:48 pm #

    Hello just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your content seem
    to be running off the screen in Firefox. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I thought
    I’d post to let you know. The design look great though!

    Hope you get the issue solved soon. Kudos

    • Chef Jeff August 28, 2014 at 2:00 pm #

      Thank you for the info. I requested my friends on Facebook take a look, if they used Firefox, and they have all reported that it looked good with no issues. I believe the problem has been corrected. Thanks again for your input.