There are very few vegetables that are as famous as the tomato and as versatile. Tomatoes can be used in just about any recipe, assuming that you know how to work with the tomato and prepare the vegetable so that it suits the recipe you are working with.
However, there are times when you may not have the best idea as to how you should go about working with the tomato to get it to the state you want it to be in. For example, when people want a tomato puree, they will often turn to the blender, which is designed to get you the smoothest puree possible, but if you do not have a blender, you may feel a bit lost as to what you should do.
Thankfully, there are still ways that you can smoothly puree a tomato, even if you do not have a blender to work with. More often than not, there will be a little bit of extra work involved, but this extra work will be well worth it when you are able to get the smooth puree you need for your recipe without needing to purchase an expensive blender to get the job done.
For the most part, the work you will have to do involves making sure the tomatoes are ready to be processed and cutting them up into smaller pieces, making sure that they don’t have the skin on them so that you can have as smooth of a puree as you would with the blender.
From here, most of the work you will be doing simply involves getting the tomatoes to reach a more liquefied state, and there are a couple ways that you can get this done.
First things first, though, you are going to have to prepare the tomatoes.
Preparing the Tomatoes for the Puree
Typically, when you make use of a blender to puree tomatoes, the blades of the blender will do most of the work to break the tomato down, turn it into smaller pieces, and eventually into a smooth, semi-liquid state that you can then make use of for your other recipes.
When you are working on making puree without the blender, you will have to do much of that work yourself, and this can become tedious.
The most tedious aspect of turning tomatoes into puree without a blender is preparing the tomatoes, since you won’t have the fast-moving blades of the blender to change the form of the tomato, you are going to have to do it yourself.
You will first want to remove all the seeds from the tomato. This can take some time and it can be a bit tedious, depending on just how many tomatoes you need to process at once, but it will be worth it not to have the texture of seeds in your tomato puree when you are done with this.
You will want to use your hands or a spoon to get the majority of the seeds out. Your fingers will be easier to work with as you can dig into the tomato and work with the seeds to get as many of them out at a time as possible, but if you don’t want to dirty your hands that much, you can also make use of a spoon or a similar instrument to force the seeds out of the tomato.
From here, you will then want to cut the tomatoes down into smaller pieces. There is no rule as to how small you should cut your tomatoes, but you should cut them down to a point where they are not so small that they could pass through the wire mesh you will be using later, and they should not be so big that they become troublesome to work with.
It may take some trial and error to get the right size tomatoes, but remember that you can always cut tomatoes smaller, but you can’t necessarily add more tomato back to a piece that has already been sliced, so you should opt to cut the tomatoes a little bit bigger than you might need so that you can chop them down as necessary.
Finally, you will then want to boil your sliced tomatoes so that they become soft and mushy to the touch. You don’t want to try and squish them too much here, as this is what will become your tomato puree, but they should be fairly malleable.
You can now take the tomatoes out of the water and you can prepare the pureeing materials.
Pureeing the Tomatoes with a Sieve and a Wire Mesh
Once you have softened the tomatoes up, you will want to grab a bowl (this will be where the puree goes, so grab a bowl that can hold all of the tomato puree) and a sieve with a wire mesh. You will be pushing the sliced and softened tomato pieces through the wire mesh, with the mushed tomatoes becoming the puree that you will use for your later recipes.
The mesh will also help to serve as a grinder, ensuring that there are no large chunks of tomato that are in the puree that would disrupt the texture of it. You can use a spoon or a spatula to push the tomato through the mesh if it is giving you problems. If the tomato seems to be too tough, this might be due to the fact that it may not have softened enough while boiling.
Again, depending on just how many tomatoes you have, this can take a bit of time, but it is one of the best methods of getting your pureed tomatoes as smoothly as possible without making an expensive trip to the store to purchase a brand-new blender.
Once you are done pushing the tomatoes through the mesh, you will have tomato skins left over in the sieve and you can boil the water out of the puree to leave you with a smooth and perfect tomato puree for all of your pureed needs.
Before you know it, you won’t even need a blender to begin with and you can reliably puree all of your tomatoes with the use of this method, given that it removes the seeds and the skins from the equation and leaves you with nothing but the puree you want.