Last weekend, we visited a pumpkin patch and farm to kick off the fall season. They had a big tomato sale going on- 25 pounds of tomatoes for $10- wow! So we bought a box and for the first time ever, I tried my hand at preparing and preserving crushed and diced tomatoes.
The process was surprisingly simple. It made a big mess in my kitchen, but it was worth it! I I ended up with about 25 cups of tomatoes, so I should be set for awhile for pasta sauces and soups to come!
- Boil a large pot of water (I actually boiled 2 pots of water to maximize my productivity)
- Place tomatoes in boiling water (don’t overcrowd the pan)
- Allow them to boil 30-60 seconds (you will see the skin start to peel away- remove them when you see this happening. If the skins aren’t peeling yet, leave them in there a little longer).
- Remove the tomatoes with a ladle and IMMEDIATELY place them in a large bowl of ice (tip: you might want to buy a bag of ice in advance of this process- the ice maker in my fridge ran out of ice)
- Peel the skin off the tomatoes (this is super easy since they have been boiled) and discard the skins
- Cut the tomatoes in half and remove the excess seeds and juice (I then placed them in a colander over a bowl to allow excess moisture to drip out)
- Crush or dice the tomatoes as desired (I diced the ones that were a little firmer and crushed the softer ones. You can use a potato masher or your hands for the crushing)
- Transfer the tomatoes into freezer ziplocs (I measured with a measuring scoop first). Be sure to press out any extra air and lay flat. Then freeze. These will stay good for up to 12 months!