Tomato Powder


This isn’t the first time I’ve reduced an unwitting fruit or vegetable to powder. I have form. As long as I’m on the loose, no chili is safe – and now, no tomato, either.

 

I have experimented with oven dried tomatoes before – like sun dried, only you can make them in countries where you don’t get much sun. This time, I went a step further and completely dried out some cherry tomatoes, before making them into powder.

 

STEP ONE: The tomatoes don’t know what’s coming. Quarter them, but don’t slice right through, leaving them slightly connected at the centre. This makes them a little easier to move around, plus looks pretty cool. Sprinkle with salt and, if you like, a little sugar.

 

Innocent Tomatoes

 

 

STEP TWO: Put the tomatoes in a low oven – about 70C – until dried out. I think it took me four hours in the end. They look kind of creepy now.

 

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Tomato Powder 017

 

 

STEP THREE: Put the now-dry tomatoes in a spice grinder and process as finely as possible. For me, this is where I found that they weren’t as completely dry as I’d have liked. You can tell by the way the powder clumps up in the spice grinder. So, on to…

 

Tomato Powder 031

 

 

STEP FOUR: Take the not-quite-powder and spread on a baking sheet again. Put back into oven for half an hour or so, to remove more moisture.

 

STEP FIVE: Spread the powder out on absorbent paper towels, and leave to sit overnight. This will remove yet more moisture and oil from the powder.

 

Tomato Powder 052

 

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You can see where the paper towel has drawn moisture and colour from the tomato powder.

 

 

STEP SIX: After resting over night, return the powder to the spice grinder and process once more. You will find the resulting powder finer and drier. There was still a certain amount of moisture, but I judged it to be acceptable.

 

Tomato Powder 049

 

Some thoughts on the uses of tomato powder, now that you have some:

  • Flavour popcorn or possibly even homemade Doritos (a challenge I intend to take on).
  • Add to humus or other dips.
  • Thicken sauces – it’s just like a really extreme form of tomato puree, right?
  • Use to give colour to rice dishes.
  • Mix with salt and pepper for a quick seasoning blend.

 

Will all that said, sometimes it’s really more about the process than the end result. Some people like to climb Everest. I like to dehydrate stuff.

 

Mine’s an easier hobby.

 

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About Rock Salt

Seasoning while rocking out since 1983. View all posts by Rock Salt

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