• 50 g rock sea salt
  • handful fresh basil leaves
  • 6 ripe plum tomatoes
  • 200 ml olive oil


  • Sprinkle an even layer of sea salt and basil leaves on a baking sheet. Cut the tomatoes in half and arrange on top, cut side up.
  • Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour and then leave to cool completely.
  • Transfer the oven dried tomatoes to a sterilised Kilner jar, discarding the sea salt and basil leave and pour over enough olive oil to cover the tomatoes completely. Otherwise transfer to a bowl, cover with cling film and chill until needed. These will keep happily like this for up to two weeks in the fridge.
  • These are a sweet and plump version of what usually comes in jars labelled sun-dried tomatoes and which, in my opinion can often taste disappointing. This recipe shows how to make them yourself but beware! It is important to get good, ripe plum tomatoes; the little Dutch waterballs just won't work.
  • I often put them into the oven for the last hour with the Sunday roast. The flavour of the meat infuses into the tomatoes imparting a wonderful savoury flavour. Use with great effect on top of pizzas, or in salads. For an almost instant pasta sauce, sauté sliced garlic cloves in a glug of olive oil and add in the oven dried tomatoes with some chopped cooked ham.