Freezing Tomatoes for the Winter

It is late September and the Ample Bites Vegetable Farm is still producing mass quantities of tomatoes. We have more than we can eat or give away so it is time to start preparing some of the fruit for use this winter. We have already frozen some tomato sauce and canned some tomato salsa. Some of this batch of tomatoes will be oven-roasted and then frozen. The oven-roasted tomatoes can be added to hearty winter soups and stews.

Today’s Tomato Harvest

Frozen Oven-Roasted Tomatoes
(Mark Kelly, 2012)

3 pounds tomatoes, halved
1 – 2 heads garlic, cloves smashed and peeled
1 handful fresh basil, torn
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven, on bake, to 375F.

Squeeze the tomatoes to remove most of the tomatoes’ seeds. Place the tomatoes in a single layer at the bottom of a large roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Place the crushed garlic in the gaps between the tomatoes. Sprinkle the basil over the tomatoes and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with the olive oil.

Bake the tomatoes for about 90 minutes, checking every 25 minutes after the first 30 minutes to make sure the tomatoes do not burn.

When the tomatoes are done allow them to cool. Ladle the tomatoes and garlic pieces into ziptop bags and press all of the air out before placing them in the freezer. Freeze for up to 4 months.

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