How to wrap leftover tomato paste to freeze in convenient portions.
This is the first of an occasional series of posts I'm going to call "One Quick Tip" ... because, well, each one will include a single quick tip, quick to absorb, easy to adopt, memorable to use.
Do you have One Quick Tip you'd like to share? Leave a comment or send me a quick e-mail via firstname.lastname@example.org. This week, how about we collect tips on how to preserve/save/use up little bits of food stuffs, something that would otherwise go to waste? Old or new idea, big or small idea, I'd love to know how you run your kitchen!
WHAT IS TOMATO PASTE? Tomato paste is a much-condensed tomato purée. In the U.S. anyway, it usually comes in a tiny three-ounce can and a still-small six-ounce can. You can also find tomato paste in convenient tubes – you squeeze it out like toothpaste – but it's harder to find and is often more expensive.
WHY FREEZE TOMATO PASTE? So if you ever used an entire can of tomato paste, you'd never have any leftover to freeze. But tomato paste is often used a tablespoon at a time, its deep, dark tomato flavor can make all the difference in a sauce, a soup, a gravy, etc. And it's not so much that you're saving a bunch of money using up all the tomato paste but that it seems there's otherwise no having a can on hand when you need one.
FREEZE TOMATO PASTE A TABLESPOON AT A TIME That's why I get out the plastic wrap whenever there's leftover tomato paste, to freeze it as I'll use it, a tablespoon at a time.
HOW TO Just tear off a piece of plastic wrap. Use two spoons (one to scoop, one to scrape) to collect dollops of tomato paste about a tablespoon big, leaving about two inches between the dollops. Wrap the plastic wrap around the dollops, then twist the plastic wrap between the dollops, separating the dollops into individual sections.
HOW TO FREEZE Place the tomato paste dollops in a freezer bag – double bagging prevents freezer burn – and then when you need some tomato paste, just snip off one dollop at a time.
THAT'S IT! Really!
Recipes Calling for the Special "Oomph" of Tomato Paste
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