Home > Storing Produce > Dry and Store Tomatoes and Fruit

Dry and Store Tomatoes and Fruit

By: Anna Hinds BA (hons) - Updated: 1 Jul 2020 | comments*Discuss
 
Drying Storing Tomatoes Fruit Recipes

Drying fruit and tomatoes is a great solution to a glut. If you grow your own, it’s a good way to enjoy the fruits of your labour for a longer season. The dried fruits and tomatoes can be used in all kinds of baking and savoury recipes – use them wherever freeze-dried is specified. Look out for cheap cherry tomatoes, apricots and raspberries when they arrive at the grocer’s or farmer’s market. Then bring home a bagful and try out our home-drying advice and recipes!

DryingTomatoes and Fruit at Home

If you don’t have a professional dehydrator, you can still dry fruit using your home oven. Sun drying is a technique used in hotter climates than ours. Solar dryers are used in Africa; these are similar to our cold frames, with racks suitable for fruit or vegetables, and glass coverings to protect the fruits from insects and animals. As you’re unlikely to get such long, hot days in the British summer, oven-drying is the best option to use in this country. It’s quick enough to ensure that the fruit dries thoroughly before developing mould (a common problem with air-drying methods).

Drying Raspberries and Strawberries

You can dry berries in the same way as tomatoes. Wash the berries thoroughly, then set the oven temperature at its lowest, spread the berries on baking trays, and leave for a few hours until dry. Large strawberries should be thinly sliced before being oven-dried. Raspberries take a long time to dry in this way; a better way may be to puree the fruits, sieve to remove the seeds, then spread thinly over your tray, and continue with the drying process. Break up the resulting ‘leather’ to make raspberry chips – use these as an alternative to freeze-dried raspberries in cereal and cookie recipes.

Drying Plums and Apricots

Plums and apricots will take around 6-8 hours to dry at a temperature of 80 degrees C (or your oven’s lowest setting, if lower). Wash, halve and stone your fruit, then dip it into a bowl of fresh lemon juice before spreading out on the baking tray. You can also dry apples in this way, slicing before dipping. Use the dried fruits in muffin and granola recipes – or as a quick snack at lunch

Drying Tomatoes

Drying your homegrown tomatoes is a great way of storing them for a few extra weeks. You can choose whether to semi-dry or fully dry your tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes work especially well with this treatment. Halve every tomato and spread the halves on a baking sheet. Set your oven to its lowest temperature and put in the tomatoes. Check after two hours to see if they’re dried to your liking. Storing your home-dried tomatoes is easy. Pack them straight into a sterilised jar, then pour in enough olive oil to fully cover the tomatoes. Seal and keep in the fridge. You can use these tomatoes in any recipes that call for sun dried tomatoes (try stirring them through pasta with rocket pesto) or offer them on a plate as part of a mezze spread.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Hi, I’m new to growing and saving fruit and vegetables. Thank you for the tips/advice on your site. What’s the best way to store potatoes- butternuts- beetroot and melons. Many thanks Suzette
Suzette - 1-Jul-20 @ 7:26 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Ell_Cee
    Re: Defrosting Food Safely
    I froze chicken before the use by date. Yesterday I defrosted it & left it in the fridge 24hrs, the use by date is past (7th July, it is…
    12 July 2020
  • Suzette
    Re: Dry and Store Tomatoes and Fruit
    Hi, I’m new to growing and saving fruit and vegetables. Thank you for the tips/advice on your site. What’s the best way to…
    1 July 2020
  • Lou
    Re: How to Freeze Cakes and Baked Goods
    Hi I'm really stuck got loads of fresh strawberries x I want to make strawberry sponges x and strawberry muffins can I…
    9 June 2020
  • Kell
    Re: Defrosting Food Safely
    I put chicken breasts in fridge to defrost last night but when I checked this morning I hadn't them fully covered? Can I still use them
    1 April 2020
  • Pat
    Re: How to Freeze Cakes and Baked Goods
    Can home made treacle cakes be frozen. If yes, for how long?
    24 March 2020
  • Di.
    Re: How to Store and Cook Leftover Vegetables
    I juice veggies, How long can you refrigerate or freeze vegetable pulp ??
    4 March 2020
  • Sandwiches71
    Re: How to Pickle Onions
    I’ve dry brined the onions for 16hrs, rinsed well and left to dry. The onions are soft, should I bin and start again? Thanks
    27 November 2019
  • Denise
    Re: Recipes for Cakes to Freeze
    I am interested to know whether I can freeze a strawberry cake with fresh whipped cream in a crystal dish for two weeks
    6 October 2019
  • Marla
    Re: How to Freeze Dairy Products
    I love your ice cream as we just moved to Fountain Hills from Anacortes WA area. I also love the San Juan Friday Harbor ice cream…
    27 September 2019
  • Natty
    Re: Defrosting Food Safely
    I'm really wanting to know what Lucinda was asking. I'm never clear on whether it's 24 hours from removing from the freezer or 24 hours…
    13 August 2019