Friday, August 27, 2010

A Tomato Trick

Good local tomatoes are starting to come into the market now, and while the heirlooms and other colorful ones are excellent for using raw, the red ripe ones for me mean dishes that depend on the juicy tomato taste, such as gravy wallah sabjees, rajma, and many other things.


I am quite a fan of silky smooth tomato puree in certain dishes, and even a bit finicky about large bits of tomato skin floating carelessly in some dishes. So naturally, I have to go the longer route to get the result. The best way to make a large batch of tomato puree is to bring a pot of water to boil, drop in the tomatoes for about a minute, then remove them with a slotted spoon. When they are cool enough to handle, they can be peeled off easily, then cored, chopped, and pureed in a food processor.

Sometimes, however, you don't need a lot of puree, perhaps just enough from a tomato or two, and so this process can get a bit cumbersome. For such times, turn to the wisdom of women like Madhur Jaffrey, Niloufer Ichaporia, and many knowledgeable home cooks. Just use a regular grater.

With a paring knife, make a small cross on the smooth end of the tomato. Hold the tomato at the stem end, and using the medium holes of the box grater, grate the tomato into a bowl. The skin will practically stay in your hand, and you will have fresh tomato puree in seconds, ready for use.

Illustrated below in pictures.


Scoring an 'X' on the tomato before grating

Tomato puree

Resulting Tomato Puree after grating

This handy trick which I have been using for a long time now goes to the Back to Basics event. The event was started here.


Home Cooked Oriya Food said...

What lovely clicks!

Saee Koranne-Khandekar said...

Love those plump, juicy, evenly red tomatoes!

Miri said...

I recently discovered this trick - and also the fact that one could peel firm tomatoes and so skip the blanching process if needed! The pics look gorgeous!

evolvingtastes said...

Somu, Saee, Miri, thanks for your comments!

Archana said...

I am using this trick a lot now. Thanks!!

evolvingtastes said...

Archana, so glad to hear that it was useful to you!

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