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Aug 24, 2013 01:39 PM

Spaghetti Sauce -- do the tomatoes need to be peeled?

I am making spaghetti sauce -- with fresh tomatoes, in the crock pot, to be stored in the freezer. The recipe says to chop the tomatoes -- do I need to peel them? Thanks!

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  1. Not if you don't want to. If you want the sauce smooth, though, you will need to peel or - better - run it through a food mill (a blender or food processor won't be as good). A food mill is indispensible for quickly processing fruits with skin (tomatoes are fruits...).

    1 Reply
    1. Here is another suggestion if you do not have a food mill. You can quickly and easily peel tomatoes by dropping them into a pot of simmering water for, say, 30 seconds, then removing them with a slotted spoon (or similar utensil). Core and chop them after they cool a bit.

      1. Don't peel. You will lose a lot of flavor. To while away the time while watching my sauce, which hardly needs so much watching, I sometimes pick out the peels that have given their all and become detached, but that is hardly necessary.

        1. Sorry to be a minority voice but yes, peel the tomatoes. After all the work to achieve a wonderful sauce, there is little worse than ingesting tough scrolls of tomato skins.

          You can cook and then pick them out but you stand to lose good sauce in the process. The fastest approach is to submerge in boiling water then place in an ice bath.....the peeling is very simple.

          3 Replies
          1. re: ThanksVille

            This exactly. Blanch them, then peel them.

            I generally prefer to use as much of the whole fruit/vegetable in a recipe, but the rolled up tomato skin flutes (skin flutes!) are very unappetizing in sauces and salsas.

            1. re: evenworse

              A food mill is a lot easier, and better texture and flavor, FWIW.

            2. re: ThanksVille

              I agree. Skins in sauce are unpleasant. I just made a sauce using Brandywines, plums and sweet yellow cherry tomatoes. I blanched and peeled the Brandywines and plums (and removed the pulp as well), but just added the cherry tomatoes whole. The next morning I picked out the chunks of garlic and the skins of the cherry tomatoes before freezing the sauce.

            3. I never peel--I use a stick blender to puree the tomatoes.

              4 Replies
              1. re: sparrowgrass

                Me too. I prefer a chunkier sauce anyway. Stray large peels get picked out if I happen to see them.

                1. re: tcamp

                  I just chop and cook them down with the peels on and then run my immersion blender through the pot before storing the sauce.

                  1. re: Njchicaa

                    That's another piece of equipment that once I got one , I don't know how I survived without one