Saturday, January 28, 2012

How to Freeze a Tomato

can you freeze a tomatoYou have a bumper crop of tomatoes to harvest and you are wondering what to do with them all. Freezing is the closest thing there is to fresh when considering a method of food preservation. Freezing retains the tomatoes nutrients, color, and flavor better than canning or drying them. Freezing a tomato is also quick and easy. Always select firm ripe tomatoes of good quality. The quality of the tomato before freezing will dramatically influence your finished product.


Freezing Tomato Sauce or Tomato Juice

  1. Wash the tomatoes
  2. Quarter, core and seed them.
  3. Simmer the tomatoes in a saucepan until they are soft, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
  4. Puree the tomatoes in a food processor.
  5. Return the tomatoes to the sauce pan and continue simmering until reduced to 1/2 the volume.
  6. Cool the sauce.
  7. Place the tomato sauce in a freezer safe container or glass jar.
  8. Label with the date and contents before freezing.
To freeze tomato juice follow only steps one through four. After the tomatoes have been pureed, cool them and freeze without reducing the volume. The sauce can be thawed and used in any recipe calling for tomato sauce.

Tomato Sauce

 Freeze a Tomato

You can freeze a tomato in quarters. This is by far the simplest method of preserving a tomato and works very well for any cooked tomato dish. Freezing a tomato also makes quick work of removing the skin.
  1. Wash the tomato.
  2. Slice it into quarters.
  3. Remove the core and seeds.
  4. Place it in a freezer-safe container and label with the date and contents. Tomatoes do not need to be thawed before cooking and they can be added to soups, stews, and casseroles without thawing them. Allowing the tomato to thaw slightly with make the skin very easy to remove. It simply slips off before adding the tomato to your favorite dish.


Troubleshooting How to Freeze a Tomato

Freezer burn is caused by improper wrapping. If your tomato comes out freezer burnt, choose a different container the next time.

Bacteria and Yeast spoil food and are ever present in the environment. To prevent spoiled tomatoes begin with the freshest, ripest tomato. Also, keep the freezer setting below 0 degrees.

Ice Crystals form when tomatoes are frozen at a temperature above 0 degrees. Setting your freezer at or below zero will freeze the tomato faster and prevent the crystals from forming.

Oxidation is when the tomato begins to brown from exposure to air. To prevent oxidation, use a container that doesn't allow are to enter.
It is quick and easy to freeze a tomato and allows them to be preserved for later. Use the tomatoes from your garden all year long by freezing them as juice, sauce, or simply quartered.



Red Bowl of Tomatoes Photo: Jacki-Dee,
Tomato Sauce Photo: KellyK,
"Ball Blue Book of Preserving." Jarden Home Brands. 2005. Muncic, IN 47305.

More articles by this author:
How to Boost Your Immune System Naturally
Tomato Food Facts

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