Learn how to make a simple from the garden tomato paste without standing over a stove. This tomato paste will help feed your family wholesome homestyle food, cut your grocery budget, and realize the full potential of your garden.
The middle and end of summer is crazy, isn’t it? The garden’s harvest is coming in full steam ahead and sometimes you just can’t hardly take a second to breathe. Tomatoes are definitely part of that craziness. Making and canning homemade tomato soup and sauce can take time. But they also cut through a good amount of tomatoes. The work intensive time to product quantity ends up being a good ratio. Tomato paste on the other hand? Not so much.
Tomato paste also was the one thing that I kept buying at the store because the at home process was so time intensive. No longer! I haven’t purchased tomato paste from the store in quite some time.
Benefits of Simple From the Garden Tomato Paste
Just like with any home preserved food, you know exactly what’s in it. I’m not even saying that there’s necessarily anything bad for you in the tomato paste you get from the store. But when you make this yourself, you know exactly what’s in your food.
The other benefit, if you’re someone like me who over plants, is that tomato paste is an extremely concentrated form of tomato so it takes a ton of them. And when you want to get as many processed as possible, this really helps solve the problem.
What You’ll Need
To make this tomato paste, you will need a dehydrator and some kind of blender or food processor. Now, most people make their tomato paste on the stove by making a tomato sauce and then reducing it down via a simmer. Others take tomato pulp and reduce it down in the oven or other heating methods. This takes a lot of time. By using a dehydrator instead, you can simply create a tomato powder that you can then rehydrate into a tomato paste. Talk about genius. No hot pots and pans. No canners. Simply dehydrate your tomatoes, turn into a powder, store in a air tight jar, and rehydrate as needed.
How to Make Tomato Powder
To make the tomato powder you should first wash off your tomatoes so that they don’t have any dirt and such on them. Then core them like you normally would, however, you can leave the skins on. Then, slice the tomatoes into slices that are around or less than a quarter inch. The thinner they are, the less time it will take to dehydrate. However, you also have to balance how much real estate your dehydrator has for space. Lay the tomato slices in a single layer on your dehydrator trays, place in the dehydrator, and let it run on a low heat setting. When using a simple old style detractor with no heat settings and to turn it on, you simply plugged it in… it took about 12 hours for the tomatoes to be completely dehydrated.
After the tomatoes are dehydrated, they should be a deep red, depending on the original color, and should be crispy to the touch. Grab your blender or food processor, I use a Ninja blender, and fill the canister full of your crispy tomatoes. I use the pureé setting on mine, but if you run it on high it should do a similar job. The end result should be a reddish brown powder.
How to Use From the Garden Tomato Paste
To use the tomato powder as tomato paste, you can choose to follow one of two methods. You can choose to rehydrate the powder in a bowl to form a true paste and then add that to your recipe. Or, if you’re like me, sometimes when you’re in a pinch you will just at the powder (and water if needed) directly to your one pot meal.
To rehydrate the tomato powder into true tomato paste, add about how much water as you will need paste. Then, slowly add the tomato powder to the water until it forms a thick tomato paste, or whatever consistency you prefer.