Sunday, August 23, 2009

Freezer Tomato Sauce, Newbie Style

I made my first batch of freezer tomato sauce, using the recipe at I tasted the sauce today (I was too tired last night to do the last step before pouring into the jars: throwing the cooked mix in a food processor and blend.

The recipe says it makes 6 to 8 cups of tomato sauce. I ended up with 4 pints total from one batch. I'm not sure how that equates to cups, and I'm too lazy to look it up in my cookbook or Google the answer online. If you're planning on making your own tomato sauce, at least now you have two measurements you can use.

The process is pretty simple, really. The most time consuming part is the peeling and de-seeding of the tomatoes. The peeling part is easy:

  1. Wash the tomatoes you will be using.
  2. Cut out the core and cut a shallow "x" into the bottom of the tomato.
  3. Boil a pan of water. When it comes to a rolling boil, place the tomatoes carefully into the water (you don't want to splash boiling water on yourself).
  4. Wait 30 seconds.
  5. Remove the tomatoes from the boiling water and immediately immerse in ice water. Leave in the water until completely cooled.
  6. The skin should slide easily off the tomato. If a patch here and there sticks, just use a paring knife to remove.
I've been through this process in the past when I've frozen tomatoes for sauces. The hard part is removing the seeds. I tried a variety of ways. I tried cutting the seed sections out when I sliced the tomatoes. I tried pushing them out with my fingers. I tried squeezing the tomato, hoping the seeds would come out. I tried ripping the tomato slices apart to remove the seeds.

As you can probably guess, my inexact methods resulted in a horrible mess on the cutting board and seeds in my tomato sauce. But is that so bad? Surely the seeds add some nutritional value? And what about the globby stuff around the seeds...isn't that important, too? After all, that's what helps give a tomato its juiciness!

This morning I spied a very simple article on how to peel and seed a tomato at eHow that would have saved me a lot of trouble. But looking at the picture of the seeded tomatoes, the tomatoes look kind of empty, like the best parts have been removed. I'm not sure I want to fully remove the seeds if doing so leaves only empty tomato shells.

And by the way, I want you to know: I only used real ingredients. I added neither tomato fiber nor natural flavors.

No comments: