What To Do With Hundreds of Tomatoes

I have had diverse experiences with my garden this year. I have the best ever beets, tomatoes, sunflower, corn and weeds… thanks to a lot of heat and some irrigation and little time to care for things thanks to renovating the old homestead.

So, I have been scrambling to catch up. The weeds, I think, are hopeless. I will have to start over next year… The tomatoes are the current crisis. I have too many. I brought in a 20L pail yesterday after picking over only 1/3 of the patch. I already had the refrigerator full. So, I invented vegetable soup…

I took a large pot and filled it about 1/3 full of tomatoes. I washed them and plucked the stems. I cut off a few blemishes but most were beautiful, juicy and red. I put in some water to submerge most of them and put on high heat. After the water boiled, I turned the heat down to medium and started a 30 minute timer. I did the same with a load of dried beans in a pressure-cooker.

When the timer went off, I mashed the tomatoes savagely with a wooden spoon and a potato masher. I ran everything through a coarse sieve to pick out the skins and squished the slimy stuff back into the pot. I then beat the mess more and filtered through a fine sieve to catch the seeds. A rinse with water flushed other solids back into the pot.

I dumped the beans into the pot and applied high heat again. I added other vegetables: frozen carrots, dried onion flakes, dried mushrooms, kernels of corn sliced from raw cobs and set the timer to 20 minutes after it boiled. I reduced heat to medium when it boiled.

With a few minutes left on the timer I added some chopped broccoli, diced bell peppers and some “MrNoodle” noodles, two packs. In addition to the spices from MrNoodle, I added pepper and salt. Just a bit.

When it was done, I had two huge bowls and shared a bowl with the little woman. She pronounced it good. 😉 I then let the pot cool and poured it into freezer bags. I don’t know what I will do when the freezer fills up in about a week…

Now, to pick more tomatoes for more soups and sauces and beets for pickling. It’s going to be a busy fall.

UPDATE Making tomato paste works really well, the volume shrinks to ~10% and a whole pot fits in a few 500mL jars. I preserve them further by boiling water bath for 45 minutes. Altogether my little plot of plants yielded 10 20L pails and it’s not finished yet so this rendering process is necessary. I made soup with some of the product. Yummyyy…

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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11 Responses to What To Do With Hundreds of Tomatoes

  1. oiaohm says:

    Thorsten Rahn please note I said a FOSS person would not waste good food. There are morally flawed things todo with good food as well as culture flawed.

    –If you have too much food its time for a party.–

    This does not say you invite the homeless.

    Something go against FOSS culture. Selling your excess food for money down the markets or other means is a FOSS solution. Just like a FOSS coder will put up a kickstarter or something else to be paid to release code he/she has already made.

    Thorsten Rahn exactly what would a person gain throwing tomatoes at a Microsoft building. There is no long term gain. Possibly just upset people without grounds. Who cleans the building. Not the people we would be upset with.

    Having a party is having some fun that you can share with others. Remember the Linus saying Just for Fun. There is a greed side as well.

    –feed homeless people– who says that there would not be a homeless person watching you throw that food at building.

    Its not about feed the homeless you don’t need to be the one to rub there face in it that they are staving.

    Thorsten Rahn also note I said good food. Rotten food that is a little different question. Odds of morally unsound goes up massively with Rotten.

    I am not saying that FOSS people are 100 percent morally sound. There are some things that are pure against FOSS cultures nature. Wasting food while is still eatable is one of those things that is against FOSS community nature.

    Yes a spud cannon at a FOSS event is not exactly the wisest move. Swap spud with tennis ball and its fine. FOSS people will ask one very important set of questions starting with “why”. Result is wasting food is not exactly a wise move.

    Culture is a interesting thing. Doing the wrong things is offensive to particular cultures and acceptable to others.

    Thorsten Rahn also the next problem you get with FOSS people is if you suggest doing something they believe by your culture that must be acceptable. This is why its important to be more careful with your jokes.

    So since you suggested the stupidity the FOSS people here believe you would be dumb enough todo something like that.

  2. Thorsten Rahn says:

    Winbreds like Thorsten Rahn will gladly watch as the world starves and they get to throw extra food at buildings.

    Oh, excuse me, did I miss the part where Rob wrote that with his tomatoes he wants to feed homeless people?

    Thorsten Rahn the reality FOSS people would not waste good food.

    Sure, sure, whatever you say. Another superbly dumb claim: FLOSS makes you a GOOD person.

    If you find me one FLOSS person who’s not even the least bit morally flawed and always does the right thing, I’ll gladly switch to Linux and videotape it.

  3. Adam King says:

    Winbreds like Thorsten Rahn will gladly watch as the world starves and they get to throw extra food at buildings.

  4. oiaohm says:

    Thorsten Rahn the reality FOSS people would not waste good food.

    If you have too much food its time for a party.

  5. Thorsten Rahn says:

    Hey Thorsten Rahn. Care to share genuine life stories and what you do other than what we already know?

    What do you know?

  6. I do have a dehydrator but I have misplaced the trays for drying liquids.

  7. choiceseeker says:

    Hey Thorsten Rahn. Care to share genuine life stories and what you do other than what we already know?

  8. Thorsten Rahn says:

    Or you could drive to this fine location:

    1950 Meadowvale Blvd
    Mississauga, Ontario
    L5N 8L9

    Then hurl your tomatoes against this fine building.

  9. AdmFubar says:

    Or try drying them… “sundried” tomatoes will be nice and compact as well.. put them in a low temp over night or about 8 hours or if you happen to have a dehydrator even better.. also try roasting them in the oven moderate heat taking out most of the water.. add a lil garlic and basil.

  10. oiaohm. I have 60L of tomatoes that should become paste tomorrow.

  11. oiaohm says:

    There is always the italian solution.


    Tomato paste is about the most compact thing you can do to tomatos. The issue is more shelf life. You can fit insane number of tomatos in a fridge using the right methods but then the problem becomes eating it all before it turns toxic.

    As paste you most likely would fit the lot in the freezer. With room to spare. Same with doing soup concentrates.

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