semi-dried tommy toes
All the way across the world Wendy, in snowy Scotland, is drying tomatoes.
Here is sun-drenched Melbourne I am giving away more tomatoes than I can eat. For a very small garden we have been spoilt with produce. Right now the grapes are dripping off the vine, the hot chillies are ripening, we have been harvesting an eggplant or three a week since mid-January and there is an embarrassing abundance of Tommy Toe’s and Grosse Lisse.
Encouraged by Wendy’s winter efforts, last night I did the first batch of dried Tommy Toes. This is my favourite tomato, a large cherry style about 3-4 cm across that grows in a little vine.
Batch number one is “semi-dried”, still a bit moist rather than leathery. Halved and placed on a rack with a light sprinkle of caster sugar, salt and cracked pepper, I cooked them for about 2.5 hours in a 100c oven. We went to bed breathing in the fruit scented air, a miraculous aromatherapy cure - I slept til 9am!
This morning I packed the semidried tomatoes into recycled anchovy jars with organic olive oil and fresh local garlic. Not being fully dried, it will be important to keep them well covered in oil but what a fragrant dressing the excess oil will make!
Now, just waiting for some cool weather to do a second batch. With the current ant plague I don’t dare dry them au naturel in the sun.