By Michelle Fabio
For many of us, the end of summer means the end of beloved fresh tomatoes, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
You can easily freeze tomatoes for enjoyment throughout the colder months.
You may have heard that foods with a high water content, like tomatoes, aren’t ideal for freezing, and that’s true; once tomatoes are defrosted, they’re quite mushy so you won’t be using them in salads.
But defrosted frozen tomatoes are great in soups, sauces, stews, and salsas, and below are two ways to freeze and store them.
Keep in mind that you should always start with firm, ripe, deep red tomatoes and always wash them and cut away the stem scars and any imperfections before beginning.
- Freezing tomatoes with skins on.
Simply place the clean, groomed tomatoes on cookie sheets and then in the freezer. When the tomatoes are frozen, transfer them to plastic freezer bags or other freezer-safe containers. When you’re ready to use them, take out as many as you’ll need and simply run them under warm water; the skins should come off easily.
- Freezing tomatoes with skins off.
In this method, you’ll need to blanch the tomatoes, i.e., dip them into boiling water for about thirty seconds to a minute until the skins split. You should then drop them into cold water, core, and peel them. From here you can cut the tomatoes into chunks or freeze whole in freezer bags or other container, being sure to leave about an inch of room at the top.
Remember that tomatoes will stay best frozen at temperatures of 0Â°F or below, and are best if used within eight months after freezing.
Now your winter already looks better, doesn’t it?