Right now, I know a lot of you out there with gardens are over run with tomatoes, so I decided to share how to freeze them as an alternative to canning. It really is super simple. I always peel mine first, but you don’t have to. The peeling is really so easy that I don’t know why you wouldn’t. Do keep in mind that you will have to use these as cooked tomatoes – great for pasta sauce, chili, etc. The freezing does change the texture enough that they wouldn’t be good in a tomato sandwich for example.
First, submerse the tomatoes in boiling water until the skins pop – this will take about a minute, but keep an eye on them. Remove them from the water as soon as they pop to cool. Some people remove them to an ice bath, but since you are going to have to cook them eventually anyway, I really don’t see the point it that.
When the tomatoes are cool enough to touch, peel the skin off with your hands. It should slip off very easily. I peeled this one entirely with one hand while taking photos with the other.
Then, cut off the area where the stem was attached and an other bad spots. Cut the tomatoes into quarters, and use a spoon to remove the seeds. You don’t have to be meticulous about the seeds, getting most of them is good enough. I always throw the scraps, seeds, etc. into a fine mesh sieve suspended over a bowl to drain. When I am done, I remove the scraps and put the tomato quarters in the sieve while I prepare the bags – don’t forget to label and date the bags. Then, I put the tomatoes in the bags and freeze, and there fresh tomato juice in the bowl to drink. And, when you are done, you have tomatoes to make all of those winter tomato dishes just waiting for you.