Drying is one of the oldest ways to preserve food there is, going back thousands of years. It’s simple, safe and helps keep the colour, aroma and flavour of ingredients for longer.
Not only does drying keep flavour locked in, it’s also a great alternative to using preservatives, which makes a lot of sense. Nothing is added when drying our vegetables. Only the water is taken away.
As Matthias Zitterbart, one of our vegetable experts says, “The whole idea of drying a product is that you remove the water so you don’t need preservatives. In this case we are just taking straight tomato paste and putting it through a drying process and making it into a product that is just how it is, full of ‘tomatoey’ goodness.”
THE WHOLE IDEA OF DRYING A PRODUCT IS THAT YOU REMOVE THE WATER SO YOU DON'T NEED PRESERVATIVES
When harvesting tomatoes, Knorr farmers will let them go thirsty for a week or so to increase their sweetness and reduce the amount of water that needs to be taken out. Then we measure the sweetness of our tomatoes with something called a Brix test.
It’s always really surprising to see how much of a vegetable is actually made up of water. For instance, we need to process 12 tons of onions for every ton of dried onion we produce (that’s all water that won’t be diluting their taste when you’re cooking)
Sometimes nature starts off the drying process. For example, our onions are picked and left to dry in the sunshine for a few days, but once they’re peeled they’re dried and processed within a couple of hours to lock in their freshness and taste.
Not all of our sustainable ingredients are dried, in fact, many are turned to paste or pulp for foods like soup or stock pots. But for our dried products, it’s reassuring to know that a method with thousands of years of history will continue to help Knorr always deliver tasty ingredients.