As I type this there are currently birds feasting on my remaining green tomatoes, essentially killing all of my hard work and progress with gardening this summer. Those little guys were never my favorite animal anyway, but now they’ve officially made the list. I feel like Zooey Deschanel (whose name I just had to Google so I would spell it right) in Failure to Launch where the birds are basically making her an anxious mess.
Anyway. I just had to share…and let it be known that I’m open to any ways to get rid of them. Except, well, killing them. I feel like that might be a little unreasonable for tomato plants.
Also, one more preface, I apologize (but not too much) for the state of my stove above. That’s real life y’all…smudgy counters, crumbs on the stove, burned water rings. It happens! No one’s perfect, amen?
And finally (I know I said that last one was the last preface, but this one really is) I am NOT in any way showing you how you should can and preserve fresh tomatoes. I’m utterly terrified of the canning process, although everyone promises that it’s super easy, and so this is if you’re going to be immediately (as in the next 1-2 days) going to be using tomato sauce. If you’re looking for great resources on preserving your sauce after you make it then this and this are two really great resources!
So let’s just jump right in, shall we? The process is super simple, it just requires a little extra attention. Real life though: I did this while Wes was eating lunch one day, meaning the entire process only took me about 30 minutes including cooling time. I used the sauce to make my favorite crockpot marinara, meaning that the prep work for an entire meal (two meals actually) was 30 minutes. Pretty simple!
The first thing you’ll want to do is wash all of your tomatoes really well. No need to dry, just scrub them really well. Then, using a sharp paring knife, cut a shallow ‘X’ shape on the bottom (opposite from where the stem was). Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and gently drop the tomatoes into the water. For this I used a long-handled slotted spoon to minimize splashing boiling water.
While they’re boiling fill a big bowl with ice and a little water. Set it close by.
Let the tomatoes boil for 30-60 seconds until you start to see the skin roll up on the ‘X’ shapes you cut. Using that same slotted spoon, scoop them out and place them in the ice bath to stop the cooking. Let them cool for about 5-10 minutes until they’re cool enough to safely handle.
Using a paring knife again gently cut out the hard section where the stem used to be. This isn’t a have to in my opinion, and some of the smaller more tender ones I left intact.
Roughly chop the tomatoes in the pot. No need to be accurate because we’re going to let the food processor do the hard stuff!
Working in batches, place the tomatoes in a food processor and pulse until they are at a consistency that you desire. I like mine almost completely pureed with very small chunks, so I had to pulse 10-12 times. Pour the sauce into a bowl and repeat until all of the tomatoes are processed.
And then you know what? VOILA! We’ve just made tomato sauce out of our abundance of fresh tomatoes! You can use homegrown or store-bought, and really any kind you like. I used the Arkansas Travelers that I grew in my container garden and they worked beautifully!