thegingerchef

Recipes from My Kitchen

Being helpful in the kitchen

on January 31, 2014

I love dishes that require tomatoes – and the fresher the better.  In the winter time, that’s not always possible (and really, the tomatoes you get at the grocery store aren’t really “fresh” – nothing beats home grown!!).  The other thing these dishes require are tomato paste.   It’s like hot dogs and buns – they sell hot dogs in 10 packs, and buns in 8 packs.   This makes no sense.  Tomato paste is the same way – you only need 1-2 Tbsp, but they only sell it in small cans.  What do you do with the rest?!?!?

One solution is to buy the tubes of tomato paste (I’ve talked about those before), but they can be a pain – the tubing is a type of metal, and doesn’t want to roll up (think toothpaste tube) very easily, so you lose out on a lot of the paste-y goodness.  So here’s the next best thing:  use your freezer.

A long time ago I bought silicon trays for super cheap (you can always find them after holidays; our local JoAnn Fabrics is always 40-70% off, I get great deals there!).   I load up the trays with the leftover paste (I even buy the big can!!).  Use a spatula to fill in the tray – it’s ok to be messy, you can clean up with the spatula when you’re done by dragging it over the top to clear off any excess.

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Freeze for a day or so, and when they’re good and solid little pats, pop them out of the silicon trays and put them in a ziploc.  Store in the freezer.  Easy as can be.  Each little heart-pat is about 1 Tbsp, so when you need one for a recipe, you grab one or two and toss in the pan.  It’s a great way to not waste your leftovers!!

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