Tomatoes


September is always a little nuts around here as we try to capture as much produce as we can.

Conveniently, this year Chris and Aeros’s tomatoes were ready the first week of September, which is good timing because it is typically a slower period for us. It keeps the kitchen crew busy instead of cutting their hours.

The PM crew washes and cores the tomatoes the night before. The AM crew comes in early to blanch, peel, and seed them.

Once the tomatoes are peeled and seeded, we take the skins and put them through the Squeezo, which will yield about 16-20 quarts of additional pulp.

After we cook all the tomatoes, we puree them and cool them.  300# of Roma tomatoes yields around 100 quarts of sauce and juice. (More about the juice later.)

The next morning we can the tomatoes. We could have done it the day before, but by that point in the day the PM crew is coming in, and it just makes more sense to break up the process into two days.

This is tomato water.  After we’ve seeded the tomatoes, we put the seeds and liquid through a chinoise and let the liquid settle over night.  The next day we carefully ladle the tomato water from the top, after all the solids have gone to the bottom. We end up with this clear liquid which is amazing for poaching fish in. We never seem to have enough of this.

After a while it gets tedious.  The last batch of tomatoes is less fun than the first.

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