oven-roasted summer tomatoes

I start counting down to tomato season as soon as it hits January. Usually by then, my homemade pantry has started to shrink significantly and I have to carefully plan out the use of my remaining tomato stash. Is that stew really worth it if I only have two pints left? Should I save them for lasagna next month?

And then tomato season comes. I can use tomatoes in recipes with abandon! Tomato soup and spaghetti and enchiladas and tomato salad and tomato sandwiches in one weekend! The only downside to preserving tomatoes for the entire year over the course of a few weekends is having so much labor squeezed into a few days. Blanching and peeling a pound of tomatoes is no big deal, but blanching and peel 10 or 20 30? That is a big, exhausting, and steaming-hot deal!

These oven roasted tomatoes, which you can water-bath process or freeze, are perfect if you are anti blanch-and-peel. The peels blister right above the tomato flesh whittling down the peeling process to an effortless peel. The concentrated tomato flavor that the oven yields makes a great addition to chiles and soups throughout the year.

Oven Roasted Tomatoes
San Marzano or Roma tomatoes
Citric Acid (if water bath canning)

  1. Preheat oven to 450º.
  2. Cut tomatoes in half and place cut-side down on a rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Place baking sheet in oven and roast until skins begin to blister and juices start to fill rimmed baking sheet. 15-20 minutes depending on size of your tomatoes.
  4. Remove from oven and let tomatoes cool until they are comfortable to touch.

Water-Bath Canning
Prepare pint-size jars for canning by heating through in hot water bath in your canner. Safely remove and empty water from jars. Add ¼ teaspoon of citric acid to bottom of jars. Pack peeled, oven-roasted tomatoes into jars, pressing down to remove any bubbles. Leave a ½ inch of headspace. Wipe rims. Place lids on cleaned rims and tighten rings by hand (do not over tighten, finger tight is fine). Place jars in water bath with at least 1″ of water over top of jars. Bring water to rolling boil and and start timer. Remove from water bath after 85 minutes of processing (raw-pack processing time per Ball Canning). You’ll hear pings as the jars seal, but don’t be worried if you don’t hear as many pings as you have jars. Let jars cool to room temperature and leave rings on for at least 12 hours. Checks jars for seal once you remove rings (lids should stay in place when you lift from lid edge without ring on. Store in pantry without rings until ready to use.

Freezing
Portion peeled, roasted tomatoes into freezer-safe containers. Freezing 1 or 2 cup portions flat in freezer-safe bags or packed in jars (1-inch of headspace) will make it easier to use only what you need when cooking. Will keep for 6-9 months.

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