Got a lot of tomatoes coming in from your garden and wondering how to preserve them?
We had that problem just this past weekend.
We got a LOAD of tomatoes from our CSA and well, a lot of them needed to be processed right away or we were going to lose them to the compost pile.
I will be writing a post in the near future on homemade sun dried tomatoes, but today I am going to share with you the absolute easiest way to preserve tomatoes that I didn't even know you could do until a few years ago.
Did you see my post on The Easiest Way to Preserve Herbs a few weeks ago?
Well, this technique is just as simple as that.
Did you know thatyou can freeze tomatoes?
I didn't. But boy, was I happy this weekend that you can!
Over the past few days we processed almost 80 pounds of tomatoes. I know, sounds crazy.
I thought that I'd have more time than just 2 days to go through them, but they were a lot “farther along” in the ripening process than we thought initially, so we needed to move fast.
A good number of them ended up in my dehydrator and they have made amazing sun-dried tomatoes.
And then we made at least 5 batches of what I think may be The Best Salsa Ever.
But the dehydrator takes awhile, and there is only so much salsa that we can eat, and so — to keep all those beauties from spoiling and since I don't know how to can yet (and didn't have time to learn :-)), I had to lean on freezing, which is the absolute easiest way to preserve tomatoes.
(By the way, for those of you wondering about the cost of preserving produce, I have a nifty cost analysis of food preservation in my post on “Which Saves Most – Dehydrating, Canning, or Freezing?”)
If you have the freezer space and no time, this is the way to go!
The Easiest Way to Preserve Tomatoes
1. Wash tomatoes.
2. Cut or process (for example, process slightly in food processor for crushed tomatoes) to desired size and texture.
3. Place a recipe-convenient amount of tomatoes with juice into bags. I put in about 3 1/2 cups (about as much as I could fit in my small bags. That's equivalent to a 28 oz. can of tomatoes. (I use small bags from Country Life Natural Foods [size 4 x 2 x 8 – and they are BPA-free!]. I buy them in super-bulk quantities since I use them so much and they are only about 2 cents each! There are similar ones on Amazon).
4. Secure with stable bag closures (these Twixit Clips are my go-to clips for everything in my house!!).
Drop Place bags in your freezer and you are done!
Do you like tips like these that make your life simpler? You can see other time saving nifty storage solutions in my posts on
- How to Store Nuts and Seeds
- The Easiest Way to Preserve Herbs
- How and Why to Store Prepared Beans
- Frugal Pantry Storage Tips
Now, if anyone lives in the West Michigan area and wants to get together to teach me how to can, I will be eternally grateful!
How about you? How do you preserve your garden bounty?