Ever find yourself with too many tomatoes and not enough time?
It can happen so quickly. It seems to take forever to get that 1st ripe tomato out of the garden, but once you do, they all start coming on like crazy.
Like any good homesteader, I hate seeing those beauties go to waste. Instead of tossing them to the chickens (they get their fair share!), I freeze them for future canning projects.
Here's how to freeze tomatoes:
Give them a quick rinse, trim off any bad spots, bag them up whole and stick them in the deep freeze.
It's that easy.
When you're ready to process, pull the bags out the night before, let them thaw and get to work.
When they've have thawed out, the skins slip right off. Tomatoes that have been frozen break down really quickly and are great for sauces. I wouldn't use them in anything you expect to have chunks or pieces because they break down so well.
Last year we froze 4 gallon-size bags of paste tomatoes. I used them later in the season to make chili sauce, which turned out great.
This year we planted 24 total tomato plants and they got ahead of us. Instead of letting them go to waste, we've frozen 5 bags (so far!) and I’ll pull them out later this fall and use them to can pasta sauce.
Here’s what we’ve canned so far with our tomatoes:
- Pizza sauce
- Chili sauce
- Crushed tomatoes
- Salsa (regular)
- Black bean and corn salsa
- Beef-vegetable soup
We’ll still have another picking yet. Tell me....How do you put up tomatoes? What other ideas do you have for stocking our pantry with tomato products?