Are you canning lots of tomatoes this year? I am!! For certain things, like making sauce, you can just chop them, puree them and go (I also like to seed them, though). But for other things, you really need to peel them too. And peeling tomatoes can be very annoying.
There are two methods: cut the peels off the tomatoes with a very sharp knife (which takes FOREVER).
Or, blanch the tomatoes in boiling water, cool them in ice water, and the peels slide off. I’ve done it this way…but, I don’t like it. For a few reasons:
1) The tomatoes are still quite warm when you get to working with them, so you can get burned!
2) It’s annoying to constantly be monitoring a new batch of tomatoes (into the pot, set the timer, out of the pot, into the ice; next batch!).
3) It’s really messy
4) There’s a lot of “stuff” involved (the pot, a bowl of ice water, a slotted spoon, etc. etc.)
Okay, so, there has to be a better way. Right? Yes.
Here is the better way (and yes, it takes longer but there is very little hands-on time!).
Put the tomatoes on a cookie sheet, like this:
Stick this cookie sheet in the freezer overnight, or at least 3 hours. They need to be pretty well frozen.
Pull the tray out when you are *almost* ready to use them. They’ll need to sit for just a few minutes. At least if you don’t want your hands to freeze.
Fill your (clean) sink with cool or slightly warm water. The tomatoes are going to take a bath!
Yes, there are some random carrot and garlic peels in the sink…I was working on other projects while my tomatoes bathed.
Walk away for a few minutes and let them sit and thaw. The warmer the water, the less time this will take.
Pull your tomatoes out of their bath (as needed, they can keep floating while you work with them one by one) and set them on the counter. Many of them will have skin that splits on its own, like this:
At this point it’s easy to just slip the skin off and continue with your recipe! Here, I’m making salsa. If it turns out well I’ll post on that later in the week.
If the skin doesn’t split on its own, simply cut a small slit in the tomato. You’ll be able to feel how loose the skin is, so once you cause a split it will slip off for sure.
How do you peel tomatoes? What do you use peeled tomatoes for?