Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Bounty of the Season Part 3: Tomatoes

My favorite way to eat a fresh heirloom tomato is on a nice crusty toasted bread with mozzarella or goat cheese, basil and a drizzle of olive oil, Yum! Simple, but as tasty as any special treat I could ever want!

I use the easiest way possible to store my tomatoes for the winter. Since we have huge freezers for the beef I claim a couple baskets in the biggest freezer for preserving vegis. Freezing is not always the best way to preserve flavor but considering the marginal success i have had with canning and limited time this year, I am just freezing again. Just follow a couple simple steps and you can enjoy your frozen tomatoes all winter long.

1. Wash tomatoes and boil water in a large kettle.
2. Fill the sink with very cold water.
3. Drop tomatoes into boiling water a few at a time and scald for 30 seconds.
4. Remove and place directly into cold water. Lift from the water and peal and core.
5. Pack in rigid containers. Leave 1 inch head space. Freeze.

If you do not even want to go through the scalding process you can simply wash and core tomatoes, set them on cookie sheets and freeze. When they are frozen, pack in freezer bags. If you use this method be sure do defrost in a bowl after running under lukewarm water to soften. These tomatoes are best used in sauces, soups and casseroles.

I like to use a great tomato soup recipe from my favorite recipe site It's simple, my kids love it and it's not from a can! It calls for fresh tomatoes, but you can also use your frozen & peeled tomatoes. Enjoy!

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