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If you need to save tomato seeds, what's the best way to preserve your harvest?  RSS feed

 
Destiny Hagest
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I've gotten some seriously beautiful tomatoes out of my (tiny) greenhouse this year, and I'd love to save the seeds. However, it's about time to start preserving them, and usually my go-to method is to blanch, skin, and freeze. So how do I preserve these beauties for cooking, while also harvesting the seeds?

I guess I could cut them in half after skinning and take the seeds out, but I'm a little worried about losing a bunch of juice - is that just the price I've gotta pay though? Any better methods out there that strike a balance?
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John Weiland
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We mostly freeze paste tomatoes.  The usual method for us is to cut the just the top off (easy to do with Roma-types) and freeze without skinning or blanching. Then when pulled from the freezer, a dip into warm water causes of the skin to pull off like sock in one piece (of ours at least, don't know if it works with all roma-types or other tomatoes).  From there, can be used for cooking by whatever means desired.

For all tomatoes, a few seeds from each fruit are 'smeared' onto a square piece of paper grocery bag paper....the brown kind.  It's cheap, rigid, and absorbent.  The juice wicks away into the paper, the drying commences quickly, and the seeds stick to the paper fibers.  The sheets of seeds are finally stacked on-end in a card-filing box like an old 4X6 recipe card box.  Rodent and insect proof and ready to pick seeds off of the labeled paper in the next season.  So yes, you will lose a tiny bit of juice, but if you have several tomatoes, you will want to take only a few seeds from each to keep your genetic diversity up and this will give you enough for the next planting.
 
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