How to Peel Tomatoes: The Quickest and Easiest Method
There comes a time in every cook’s life when they are confronted with a pile of tomatoes and a recipe that instructs them to peel them. It seems pointless, onerous, and time-consuming, but for the sake of a silky-smooth tomato sauce or soup, we do it anyway.
There are a few ways to peel tomatoes, but the best way to get the job done is the poaching method. It makes easy work of peeling a bunch of tomatoes in a fairly short period of time, and the tomatoes retain their fresh tomato flavor. Here’s how it’s done in four simple steps.
What Is the Easiest Way to Remove Skin from Tomatoes?
The easiest way to remove skin from tomatoes, whether you have four or 40 tomatoes, is using the poaching — or blanching — method. It’s called that because after scoring the skin, the tomatoes are dropped into a pot of boiling water, then transferred to an ice bath. After that, with the help of a paring knife, the skins come right off.
How Long to Boil Tomatoes for Peeling?
Believe it or not, the tomatoes require less than a minute in the water. Just 30 to 45 seconds will do it. A kitchen timer is helpful, but you can also rely on visual cues to know when it’s time to remove the tomatoes from the boiling water. Once the tomato skin starts to wrinkle of split, it’s time to pull them from the water and transfer to an ice bath.
5 Simple Steps for Peeling Tomatoes
1. Boil water and prepare an ice bath.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with ice and water, and set it next to the stove.
2. Score the tomatoes.
Hull the stems and score the bottom of the tomatoes with an “X.” The cut should be shallow — just enough to break the skin.
3. Boil tomatoes.
Working in batches, drop several tomatoes into the boiling water to blanch them. Watch for their skins to start to wrinkle and split, 30 to 45 seconds.
4. Transfer tomatoes to the ice bath.
After the tomatoes’ skin has started to wrinkle and split, scoop them out with a slotted spoon and transfer them to the ice water bath. Repeat with the remaining tomatoes.
5. Peel tomatoes.
Once cooled, transfer the tomatoes to a cutting board. Use a paring knife or your fingers to peel back the tomato skins.