Roasted Frozen Tomatoes


I have discovered my tomato preservation method of choice from here on out--roasting and freezing.

The method?

First, cut the tomatoes into sort of equally sized chunks.  Toss with them with olive oil on a sheet pan, and mix in some seasoning if you like--I've been doing thyme, salt, and a pinch of sugar.  Them put the tomatoes in your oven on its lowest setting, and stir around every hour or so until they start to fall apart.  The time necessary will vary a lot depending on how many tomatoes you start with, but plan for about five hours for a moderately full, small sheet pan.

When the tomatoes are done, let them cool just a bit, then spoon them into jars or whatever other container your heart fancies.  Pop 'em in the freezer and you're done!

Why is this so wonderful?

The biggest reason for me is that I can make them in batches as my tomatoes get ripe/bought/magically appear.  Some days there are only two or three tomatoes that are ripe in the garden.  Some days I buy a sack at the farmer's market.  Some days Nice Father-In-Law brings us buckets full from his garden.  Because you aren't canning these, you don't have to be finicky about having a certain amount before you start.  You can make one jar or fifty.

Additionally, although it's self-evident it bears repeating, not canning them means you don't have to can them.  No waiting for water to boil, or hauling out the big pot just to do a few measly jars.  I've been starting them at night when I get home from work.  A few stirs throughout the evening, and by bedtime they're done.  (And you can steal a few for a late night snack before you pack them up!)  They're just about impossible to forget about and leave in the oven on accident--they smell too darned good!

And the taste?  Divine!  Roasting the tomatoes concentrates the flavor so much--they're like the most tomatoey tomatoes ever, and they're going to make me a happy, happy girl this winter!