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Apparently I have done a little somethin’ in my kitchen that has sparked the curiosity of quite a few of you 🙂 The other day when I bottled my first batch of tomato sauce for the season I realised I didn’t have enough bottles put aside for all of the tomatoes I had on hand. Rather than have them go to waste I decided to preserve a few kilos as powder.
Say what?! Tomato powder. What on Earth?
Well, that was the reaction I got out there in social media land. Who knew my humble little tomatoes would cause such a stir 😀
So what is tomato powder? It’s just dehydrated tomatoes, ground to a powder so that they can be stored in the pantry. Here’s how…
- Wash, dry and slice your tomatoes. I find slices about half a centimetre thick work best in my dehydrator. Discard any bruised or mushy parts. There is no need to peel first.
- Lay out the slices on the dehydrator trays, making sure the slices don’t touch. This is so air can flow all around them. I use a basic Aldi dehdrator very similar to this one. Nothing fancy or expensive. Set the dehydrator to 55C and away you go. The time it takes will depend on a few things. The water content of the tomatoes used, the humidity in the air, and will also vary dependent on the dehydrator used. I had one batch take 15 hours and another take 24 hours. Just rotate your trays every few hours during the day, checking each time.
- Once the tomato slices are completely dried out you can remove them from the dehydrator. You will know they are ready because they will feel dry and brittle. Grind to a powder in a coffee grinder. If you don’t have one you could use a mortar and pestle, you will just end up with a coarser flake instead of fine powder. Unless you have Hulk arms, of course 😉
Store your powder in an airtight container in the pantry.
Now that you’ve made all this powder, what are you going to do with it?
- Mix equal parts water and powder to make tomato paste
- Use to make tomato broth or to boost a regular tomato soup
- Add to flour mixes to flavour homebaked breads and scones
- Mix with other dried vegetables to make your own dried stock powder
- Make ‘Kwik Ketchup’ when you’ve exhausted your stock of homemade tomato sauce. Just mix with apple cider vinegar, sugar and salt
- Use in dry meatrubs and add to marinades
- Thicken pasta sauces while adding an extra hit of tomato flavour
- Flavour baked rice dishes
- Add to scrambled eggs and omelettes
- Stir into cream cheese and spread on toast
- Use to add flavour and depth to winter casseroles
- Mix into your hamburger mince to add flavour to your patties
- You can replace some or all of the canned tomatoes in recipes with tomato powder. Just be aware that this will change the texture of food
If you can think of more ways to use this clever little powder, let me know in the comments! I adore the taste of homemade tomato paste, and will probably still put up a batch this year, but this is definitely a lot cleaner and easier to make. And it doesn’t take up so much room in my pantry or freezer. I will definitely be filling a few more jars before tomato season ends.
Happy Homesteading x