Monday, March 15, 2010
frozen tomato stash was beginning to wan. I was afraid I was going to have to avoid tomatoes because I am not about to pay over $2/pound for those puppies! I was very glad to see Roma tomatoes go on sale a week or so ago and through the power of price matching, I didn't have to drive across town to get them! I picked up 14 pounds of lovelies at Wal-Mart for a mere $4.62!
I am finding that I mostly use tomato sauce and thus decided to cook these tomatoes in to sauce. By "tomato sauce" I mean just that and not marinara or red sauce for pasta. I did absolutely no research -- I just winged it, which was a bit scary but turned out just fine.
First, I dropped the tomatoes in to boiling water for about 2-3 minutes so I could easily slip off the skins. I am not certain this is necessary, but I didn't want tomato skins in my sauce so I did it. I do, however, have little bitty seeds in my sauce from the tomatoes. You can't taste or feel them, but I see them and it bugs me. I think next time I'll seed the tomatoes and leave the skins on and see how that works.
I took the skinned tomatoes and threw them in a large pot, mashed them a bit with my Pampered Chef Chop and Mash thingy and brought them to a simmer. I let them cook like that, mashing every so often, for about 2-3 hours.
Next, I transferred the cooked tomatoes to my blender in batches and pureed until smooth. This is where an immersion blender would come in handy, but I don't have one so I made do. I was planning to cook the sauce further, but it did not seem necessary. So I let the sauce cool and divided it up into 1 and 2 cup servings in freezer bags. Fourteen pounds of Romas made about 14 cups of tomato sauce.
I did not add any salt or flavorings to the tomatoes, but you certainly can! I just wanted plain old sauce to be used to make marinara or pizza sauce. I was a bit worried about taste, but it is so much better than the canned stuff!
Next on my tomato to do list: tomato paste!