I don't have a fancy food dehydrator. In fact my dehydrator is probably over 25 years old and is only one step up from an oven with a pilot light but it usually gets the job done as long as I remember to keep an eye on it and check to make sure things are going according to schedule. Well...
I managed to turn these luscious little beauties into this -
NOT the product I was going for! I was aiming for more of a leathery, sun dried tomato thing and what I got was more of a totally crispy, completely devoid of any determinable shape or flavor thing. Yikes! I could swear I turned that thing off before I went to bed. What am I going to do with this mess? Then a brain storm hit!
Into the food processor the whole disaster went and I pulsed and pulsed until I came up with this...
I'm calling this Tomato Essence and it's fantastic! This is the very stuff you need to add to soups and stews and sauces when you want just a hint of tomato but not too much, when you want to add depth of flavor to your dish but don't want to overpower it with tomato paste or sauce. I've already tried it in beans and pot roast and oh my! I liked it so much I did it again, on purpose! This time I used the blender to pulverize and that worked even easier.
Right now I have a pint jar of sunny, summer tomato flavor on my shelf and I'm thinking that I'll do the same thing with those semi-hot peppers that are almost ready to pick out in the garden. What a great way to add just the right amount of zing to a winter dish. And, yes I am saving up for a better, newer dehydrator.
P.S. Go easy when adding this Essence it really is concentrated flavor. Remember you can always add more but you can't take it out!
Until next time,