Tricks with Tomato Paste

 

Tomato paste has such intense tomato flavor, its richness and depth complement many foods. Often I would open a can, leave it in the refrigerator, only to discover it much later, dried up and useless. What a shame.

I have discovered that if I tightly wrap the portion I do not use in plastic wrap, and freeze it, it is a simple thing to cut off what I need and add it to my dish. The remainder is then kept frozen.

I stir a small amount in with fresh, hot pasta along with a little butter until it is all mixed in and then add fresh herbs, salt and pepper, sprinkle with Romano cheese. Sometimes I add sun-dried tomatoes. Zesty!

When cooking green beans, I take a can of green beans, drained, put into a skillet with sizzling butter in which I have cooked onions and garlic until limp, then as it is all coming to a sizzle, add a tablespoon or two of tomato paste. Season with salt, pepper, seasoning salt, a drizzle of lemon, turn down the heat, simmer for about two minutes. This is really tasty.

I use tomato paste in beef dishes, especially left-over meats. I cut them up, cook with onions and garlic in a little butter, add the tomato paste, and simmer with a little water. This sauces the meat, warms it through, and gives it an extra kick.  Add pepper flakes if you like it spicy.

I am certain you must have uses for this great sauce besides making pasta. It is a sweet, strong flavor, lifting anything it is cooked with.  Go on, experiment!