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Tomato Puree comes handy to many dishes. To prepare tomato purée, ripe tomatoes are washed and the leaves and stem are removed. Some processors remove the skin of the tomato as well. It can be blanched or unblanched- individual choice. However, blanching will help to loosen the skin and also partially cook to preserve color and flavor. Use a blender or processor to blend to a smooth puree. It should resemble a pourable puree. If it is very thick, add a little water. Now you have a delicious tomato puree.
How to Select
Tomato puree, made of cooked tomatoes, is available canned in most food stores and is used to add flavor and body to sauces. However, fresh tomato puree is easy and convenient to make and a much better healthy option too.
· Purée tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers and scallions together in a food processor and season with herbs and spices of your choice to make the refreshing cold soup, gazpacho.
· Tomato purée can be used in soups, stews, sauces, or any other dish where the tomato flavor is desired, but not the texture.
· Puree can also be used for spaghetti sauce, goulash and other casserole type dishes.
· It is often called for in marinades too... it's not that different from tomato sauce, just pulpier.
· Tomato puree can make a tasty Mexican salsa.
· Combine tomato puree with other vegetables to make a tasty side dish or snack.
How to Store
To preserve nutrient quality and taste, store tomato juice in the freezer not more than a week. Though advisable to use fresh, however left over or extra can be kept in tightly closed containers in the refrigerator. Use as desired and then immediately refrigerate the closed container after every use.
· Free radicals in the body can be flushed out with high levels of Lycopene, and freshly made tomato puree is so amply loaded with this vital anti-oxidant that it actually derives its rich redness from the nutrient.
· Lycopene can be found in tomato puree which is best in a concentrated form.
· Tomato puree extract contains a mix of potent antioxidants including lycopene, beta-carotene, vitamin E and various other phytonutrients.
· It has been associated with lowering blood pressure and boosting immune function.
· Tomato puree is rich in Vitamin C, which is known for its immune enhancing properties.