One of my favorite summer treats are fresh tomatoes, either from my garden (if my green thumb holds out) or from my local farmer’s market. I sometimes run out of ideas for fresh tomato recipes and hate to see them spoil if I can’t eat them fast enough. But this year, I’ll be ahead of the game, since I plan to freeze what I grow or buy and enjoy them through the winter months in soups, stews, and sauces. I always knew that freezing is one of the easiest ways to preserve many fruits and vegetables without losing much of their flavor or nutritional value, but I never thought tomatoes would freeze well. Surprise! Here are some tips to freezing tomatoes that I discovered:
· Tomatoes can be preserved cooked or raw, and whole, diced, sliced or pureed.
· Wash tomatoes thoroughly before getting them ready to freeze.
· You can freeze peeled or unpeeled tomatoes. To peel them before freezing, just dip them into boiling water for 1 minute, let cool, and the skin will come off easily! If you want to peel frozen tomatoes, just run them under warm running water for a minute.
· To freeze whole tomatoes, cut out the stem first. Otherwise, slice or chop the tomatoes.
· Place the whole or cut tomatoes on a cookie sheet in the freezer.
· After they are frozen, transfer the pieces to freezer bags or containers.
· You can also pour chopped or pureed tomatoes into ice cube trays. Once frozen, pop the cubes out and store them in freezer bags or containers.
· Good cooking tip: It’s better to add spices and herbs after thawing frozen tomatoes, since they can either become too powerful or lose their kick when frozen.
For more information on preserving, storing and cooking tomatoes visit: http://snap.nal.usda.gov/resource-library/whats-available-summer/tomatoes
Do you ever freeze vegetables or fruits? Let us know!
National Minority Health Month: A Focus on Oral Health posted on Apr 25
April is National Minority Health Month – a time for us to highlight the Department’s work promoting the well-being of racial, ethnic and linguistic minority populations throughout the Commonwealth. Spearheaded by our Office of Health Equity (OHE), all DPH programs strive to respond effectively to …Continue Reading National Minority Health Month: A Focus on Oral Health
Don’t Fall Behind – Vaccinate On Time! posted on Apr 24
National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW) is an annual observance to highlight the importance of protecting infants from vaccine-preventable diseases and to celebrate the achievements of immunization partners in promoting healthy communities throughout the United States. This year, NIIW is April 22-29, 2017. One of the …Continue Reading Don’t Fall Behind – Vaccinate On Time!
Weekly Flu Report, April 21, 2017 posted on Apr 21
The latest weekly flu report shows a drop in rates of flu-like illness in Massachusetts over the past seven days. Even so, we can expect flu to continue to circulate in our communities well into spring – so it’s not too late to get a flu shot …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, April 21, 2017