Hand picked, sun-dried tomatoes available as halves, bits and powder.
Sun-dried tomato history
Sun dried tomatoes were born in Italy as a way to store fresh tomatoes for the winter. Italians dried fresh tomatoes in the hot sun on their tile roofs as a way to preserve them for the cold months. These dried, concentrated vessels of flavour have enjoyed a popularity boost in the in the past couple of decades, initially as a gourmet item but fast becoming a favourite of home cooks. Sun-dried tomatoes can be used in a wide variety of recipes and come in a variety of shapes and colours. Sun dried tomatoes have the same nutritional value as the fresh tomatoes they are made from. They are high in Lycopene, antioxidants, vitamin C and low in sodium, fat, and calories.
The origin of the tomato has been linked to Peru and Ecuador. During the sixteenth century, explorers brought tomatoes to Europe from the fruit’s birthplace, the New World. These first tomatoes were yellow, awarding the Italian name, “pomodoro,” meaning golden apple. Red tomatoes appeared later, compliments of two Jesuit priests returning from Mexico with red tomato seeds. Tomatoes were originally sun-dried due to the absence of refrigeration, freezers and modern ovens. Drying tomatoes in the sun allowed for year round enjoyment of the harvest.
When they first appeared in English print in the early seventeenth century, tomatoes were referred to as “love apples.” During the nineteenth century, American cookbooks warned that tomatoes should be cooked for a minimum of three hours before eating to eliminate the raw taste. People were cautioned not to eat tomatoes raw because they were still suspected to be poisonous.
It takes twenty pounds of fresh tomatoes to make one pound of sun-dried tomatoes. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, which may help protect against diseases such as cancer and heart disease. One medium tomato can provide 40% of your daily requirement of Vitamin C. A diet rich in tomato-based foods has been linked to a decreased risk of prostate cancer. Tomatoes are: low in fat, calories & sodium, and free from saturated fat & cholesterol, and rich in fibre. They are also high in vitamin A & C, and a good source of potassium. Fresh tomatoes are 93% water. One cup of raw tomatoes has an average of 8 grams of carbs. Tomatoes are lipophilic, which means their nutritional value is increased by being cooked with some fat, like olive oil.