I only found out last year that you could freeze tomatoes. This year I grew three different varieties; Purple Cherokee, Big Rainbow, and Jen’s Tangerine (a small orange coloured tomato from France).**
This year I was short on time once again as everything was ripening and we were in the process of moving house, so the tomatoes have been frozen once again. I actually think I prefer the taste of the thawed fresh-frozen ones over canned anyways. The great thing about this method is that you can also pick the tomatoes when they are green, let them ripen indoors and then process them as they ripen, a few at a time. Preparing tomatoes/processing them for freezing is quick, easy and no where near the chore of canning them!
How to Freeze Tomatoes
Step 1. Wash the ripe tomatoes
Step 2. Remove core
Step 3. Chop (or not) If I am doing a bigger batch I like to chop them all up first into a big wooden bowl, then measure them out into bags or containers all at once.
Step 4. Put into freezer bags or plastic containers
Step 5. Freeze.
To de-skin or not to de-skin?
I don’t remove the skins or seeds from tomatoes – whether I am using them fresh in cooking or freezing. It’s not because I am lazy (although I am) but I find the seeds and their gel add flavour and the skins certainly add fibre. I find the seeds and skin disappear anyways. Oh! You can also whir the semi-thawed tomatoes in a blender for an absolutely stunning passata as well!
**All the afore-mentioned tomatoes are heirloom open-pollinated varieties, and I have saved seeds for next year from the best of my crop this year – the tastiest and prettiest tomatoes you could dream of. The Big Rainbow tomatoes that I harvested seeds from were both absolutely delicious and beautiful to boot. Likewise for the Purple Cherokee. The tangerine one is lovely in salads or sautéed lightly with garlic for a side dish.