It’s tomato time!
Tuesday evening I picked an ice-cream bucket and a cardboard flat’s worth of tomatoes from our community garden. Wednesday morning I washed and sliced and filled up the dehydrator with the red gems. Cherry tomatoes are great for dehydrating since they only need to be cut in half. For larger tomatoes, just slice as you would for sandwiches, and cut again in half if you like. After they are dehydrated, you can cut or break them into smaller pieces for storage.
I highly recommend the Excalibur dehydrator, though I haven’t tried anything else. But it lived up to the things I read about it when I was researching dehydrators (this is now my second harvest season using it). And definitely go for the 9-tray – dehydrating food takes a lot of space because you must spread out so many slices.
Making tomato sauce was Wednesday afternoon’s project. Summer in a jar! Water-bath canning is relatively easy and economical. I will give no directions here, as they abound on the Internet and at your library or bookstore. Also perhaps in the brain of your brother-in-law or grandmother or next-door neighbor!
This winter we will make some yummy pasta dinners with pesto I froze and tomatoes I dried, in a sauce with maybe some olive oil and wine. And we’ll be pulling down jars of tomato sauce for spaghetti, pizza, chili, tomato soup . . . but, that’s enough thinking about winter for now.