Updated: Sep 24
One of the things we love about growing our own fruit and veg is the harvest. From the time the seed goes into the dirt you are watching the plant grow, slowly and surely produce. The reward is produce that you know ripens on the plant in natural sunlight. Of course, there is always more than you can handle and a tomato harvest is one of the biggest yield so in good kiwi fashion of no waste, we decided to make smokey TKO tomato paste.
Brendan spent some time on google searching for the "best" recipe but many called for a food mill or other items we didn’t own. Brendan worked out what he was trying to achieve, what equipment we already owned and the goal to get as much of the tomato without the skin and seeds.
The TKO tomato paste recipe was born.
Bucket of tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
Salt to taste
Wood of choice for the infused flavour (we used Potuhukawa)
Fill a 10 litre bucket with tomatoes, then wash them
Roughly cut up the tomatoes to help the break down process and put in a cooking pot
Put them onto the stove to cook and help separate the skin from the flesh. It is important to try and bring the bottom to the top so that all the tomatoes cook and the bottom does not burn
Once it was boiling and the tomatoes look soft, add a quarter of a cup of olive oil and gave the tomatoes a quick blend
Now the slow process of straining the tomato puree though the stainless steel sieve (we would recommend a bigger sieve than the one shown in the photos).
With a soft spatula push the tomatoes though the sieve until only the seeds and skin were left in the sieve
Place the juice into the oven trays ready for the oven.
Heat the oven to 150 with an ember bed established, then place the tomato juice in the oven. (If you want to reduce the time in the oven and therefore use less wood, you could boil the tomatoes on the stove until it has reduced some more).
Every 30 mins, check the oven temperature and add more wood, adjusted the dampers and stir the tomato juice. It will start to thicken as the water evaporates off and once the tomatoes are at the desired thickness, remove from oven and place into jars.
Wood smoked jars of tomato goodness perfect for pizza bases, spaghetti bolognese or nachos.