By Cat, Jan, 2016 (Photo, right, from Wikimedia Commons)
I have several recipes that call for ‘a can of stewed tomatoes.’ Now, there was a time when I would use these shortcuts – when I worked 12 hours a day and had no time to cook the old-fashioned way. But now that I’m retired, I shun processed foods because of all the additives, GMOs, and the toxins in the epoxy can-liners. Plus, it’s not so difficult or time consuming to make most of them from scratch. Stewed tomatoes is a perfect example.
Stewed tomatoes can be served warm as a side dish, or add as an ingredient in other recipes.
Homemade Stewed Tomatoes
This is such an easy thing to make, especially if you don’t mind using the whole tomato (peel, seeds and all); and really not much more difficult to remove the peel and seeds.
You can make it Italian, Greek, Spanish or French style, depending on the herbs added; Italian style is the most common, and the type that comes in cans.
Makes about 1 quart of stewed tomatoes.
Ingredients & Equipment
It goes without saying, all veggies, herbs and spices should be organically raised, preferably from your local area.
- ¼ cup chopped green bell pepper
- 2 – 4 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (leaves and stems), or 1 tsp dried parsley
- ¼ – ½ cup chopped celery, with leaves (optional)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh onion (optional)
- 10 heirloom tomatoes (beef or roma variety)
- 2 tsp unrefined sea salt
- ½ tsp Rapadura or other dehydrated sugar cane juice
- ¼ – ½ tsp balsamic vinegar (optional)
- herbs of choice, such as basil, oregano, savory, etc. For Italian-stype, use 1 tsp dried basil (see Individual Herbs & Spices: A – F and G – Z for ideas)
- Food mill (optional)
- stock pot (stainless steel)
- Chop bell pepper, parsley, plus celery and onion (if using); place in stock pot with salt and sugar
- Tomatoes; if you:
- Don’t want seeds nor peel, place washed tomatoes in a food mill set over a bowl. Turn the mill until only peel and seeds remain in the mill, and all the juice is in the bowl.
- Alternately, peel them as in next bullet; then cut each in half around the equator. Hold each half in the palm of your hand and gently squeeze out the seeds
- Don’t want peel but seeds are OK, bring a stock pot of water to boil, plunge tomatoes in for 10 to 15 seconds (no longer, or they will be too mushy). Remove, put immediately in a ice bath to shock them. Peel and discard the skins. Cut tomatoes into wedges or chop them to desired size.
- Don’t mind the peel or seeds, simply wash them, then cut them up into wedges or chop to desired size.
- See also Using and Preserving Tomatoes.
- Add prepped tomatoes to other ingredients in the pot.
- Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Adjust seasoning
- Use/serve fresh, or freeze in glass mason jars (leave 1″ air at top of jar).
- Brooklyn Farm Girl Blog recipe, brooklynfarmgirl.com/2013/08/14/the-best-stewed-tomatoes-ever
- All Recipes: allrecipes.com/recipe/21092/italian-stewed-tomatoes
- Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig; see Beloved Cookbooks for more detail about this book