Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Recipe Day: Easy Homemade Stewed Tomatoes

Every time I read something new about foods and the FDA, it gets a little scarier. The not-so-latest, but hardest habit for me to break, has been buying canned tomatoes. Going to dried beans from canned was not so bad, just required a bit of pre-planning; getting rid of most canned vegetables was not remotely difficult because they tend to be overcooked and mushy; but darn those tomatoes in a can! They're just so handy when making homemade spaghetti sauce and soups.

Then I came home from Scotland - long story for another time, but a great trip nonetheless. And found myself faced with a half-bushel of just ripened tomatoes and nothing to do with them. We sliced them for several days, we diced some, we did everything but make tomato pie! And still had a bunch. There is a first time for everything, so I decided to skin and juice them and stew them up for other projects.

Skinning and juicing a tomato is much easier than it sounds. You do not have to pull out a potato peeler at all. I hope this blog post is helpful with learning to stew tomatoes at home and do away with the canned type and the chemicals therein.

First you want to put a rather large pot of water on to get it close to boiling. The cut a pretty good-sized "X" into the bottom of each tomato. Once the water is boiling, drop the tomatoes in for two to three minutes. The peel will begin to crack before too long. I've split this into two steps and recorded it. I tend to walk and talk, so please forgive the moving around the kitchen in the video as I go from counter, to stove, to second counter. I will get better at this in time! Check out the video to see what I mean. 

This second video completes the process, during which you remove the skin, get rid of the juice and seeds and get it back in the pot to stew it up. As you squeeze them they squirt everywhere, so don't wear your finest clothes, or at the least put on an apron! 

During this portion, I mixed mine in with sautéed garlic and onion chunks to give it additional flavor for later on. Once you are done seeding and juicing the tomato, roughly chop it up and throw it in your pot - there is not need to add more liquid because even squeezed out there will be plenty of water in the tomatoes as they cook.

I hope these videos were helpful to you and that you'll try stewing your own tomatoes and moving just one more step in a healthy direction! What new recipes are YOU trying today?

Head over to Try a New Recipe Tuesday and Frugally Sustainable to see what others are cooking up this week!

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