Sun-dried tomatoes are a concentrated source of nutrients. They provide vitamins C and K, iron and lycopene, an antioxidant associated with a lower risk of certain cancers. ‘I like the umami quality that sun-dried tomatoes give any dish,’ says RW contributing chef and marathoner Nate Appleman. He uses them in salads, sandwiches, sauces and dressings. Here are three of his favourite ways to get the best from them.
1/ Pasta sauce
‘This is fast, easy and very tasty,’ says Appleman.
55g sun-dried tomatoes
60ml olive oil
70g almonds, toasted
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
½ tsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tsp salt
Stick 450g of pasta on to boil. Place the sauce ingredients in a food processor. Process until just blended. Stir in 120ml of the pasta cooking water. Toss the sauce with the pasta while it’s hot and top with grated Parmesan. Serves 4.
2/ Veggie dip
‘The combo of sesame and concentrated tomato flavour is amazing,’ says Appleman. This can also be a dressing.
30g sun-dried tomatoes
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp lemon juice
Blend the ingredients in a food processor. Season with salt. To use as a dressing, add water, a little at a time, to thin to desired consistency.
3/ Tomato butter
‘Melt a little of this butter on grilled steak, chicken or salmon,’ says Appleman.
120g butter, softened
3 tbsp finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Ground black pepper
In a mixer or by hand, stir all the ingredients together. Refrigerate for an hour before using.