Crushing and storing your own tomatoes allows you to conveniently use fresh ingredients for your next dish. Whether you have a tomato garden outside or buying a surplus from the store when they're on sale, crushing the tomatoes is an ideal way to save money and eat a more natural product than what you find in store cans. Crushing tomatoes is simple enough for any home cook to complete and spending a small amount of time in the process will give you months of fresh, nutritious tomato sauce.
Gather and wash your tomatoes before cooking. While any tomato works for crushing, a Roma tomato is ideal because it's meatier and contains less water than other varieties, according to the Pick Your Own Website.
Peel away the skin from each tomato with a paring knife and cut away any stems. Cut each of the tomatoes into quarters so they boil down quicker. If you want a cold, crushed tomato for a quick recipe, cut each fruit into half-pieces and rub up and down on a food grater over a dish.
Squeeze out the excess water and seeds from each tomato after you peel away the skin. This will remove much of the water and most of the seeds in the tomato so it won't water down the tomato sauce.
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Place all of the tomatoes into a large saucepan and crush with a spoon to break them up. Simmer the tomatoes on a low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring to break up any large chunks. Add a small amount of minced garlic, salt or dried herbs to season up the tomatoes to your liking. Taste the sauce and add seasoning accordingly.
Allow the tomatoes to cool down after you've simmered them. Store the crushed tomato sauce in a sterilized canning jar for storing or add the fresh sauce to your dish and serve.