I was completely befuddled the first time I saw anyone peel a tomato. I saw no need for it, as the peels are not very tough. I then started noticing how tomato peels behave in recipes. They can become chewy or hard, particularly if the recipe is one that is eaten the next day. I came to the realization that there are some cases where peeling them is a very good idea.
The easiest way to peel a tomato is to blanch it first. To do this, put enough water in a sauce pan to cover a tomato, but no higher than 1-½ inches from the top. Bring the water to a boil. I blanch one tomato at a time, particularly if the tomatoes are cold because putting several in the water drops the temperature. You can put up to three in a pan if you extend their time in the boiling water.
Using a slotted spoon, put one tomato into the pan. Leave it in the boiling water for 12 seconds. If the water doesn’t cover the tomato completely, then roll it around during the 12 seconds. If you leave it in too long, the tomato starts cooking and you will get a pretty good layer of flesh off with the skin.
Remove the tomato from the boiling water with the slotted spoon. Immediately dunk it into cold water to stop its cooking.
Then, using a sharp knife, cut a slit in the skin and peel the tomato by catching the skin between your thumb and the knife. The skin should come off very easily.
Put the peeled tomato aside and blanch and peel the rest of them. You can slice or dice them all at once.
Until next time,
Lisa, aka Veggie Gal