Tomatoes. My one real food dislike. There’s something about the acidity of fresh tomatoes that has been a turn off for me since childhood.
Yet, tomatoes are the base for so much of my favourite food.
Solution? I always used canned. Always. Period.
They’re sweeter and lack the acidity of their fresh cousins. So I’m able to eat and enjoy them.
But yes, this does mean I never add tomatoes to a salad!
Turns out though, canned tomatoes aren’t just for the fresh tomato avoiders like me. They also have some other advantages.
So, here are my 4 praises of Canned Tomatoes:
1. We’ve covered this one. No risk for tomato-avoiders. This is the only way tomatoes are palatable for me.
2. Italian cooks know they’re are best for making sauce. Some Italian chefs will only use San Marzano tomatoes from Naples for authentic tomato sauce and therefore can only use canned. By using tomatoes canned at peak ripeness, you can achieve a consistency that you can’t replicate with fresh tomatoes where the flavour and sweetness varies greatly throughout the year.
3. They don’t need time to cook down in a pan and therefore shorten the cooking time for just about any dish. This is a secret for cutting down the cooking time for Indian curries especially. It’s what makes cooking Indian food realistic for me on week nights!
4. Finally, perhaps the best thing about canned tomatoes, is that they make so many dishes into pantry meals! They can being some freshness to a dish without having to have fresh produce on hand. They also mean that there are many meals I can make when the fridge is bare. Think basic pasta, chana masala using canned chickpeas, etc.
So there you have it. Keep a shelf full of canned tomatoes and you’ll always have something tasty you can serve me for dinner 😉