Tomato Paste

Last week we jumped the gun, and shared a recipe for homemade pizza sauce.  If you really want to start from scratch with fresh tomatoes, try this recipe for making tomato paste.


  • 8 quarts roma tomatoes, about 4 dozen (or other meaty tomatoes)
  • 1 1⁄2 cups sweet red peppers, chopped (about 3)
  • 1 cup chopped onion (optional)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 1⁄2 teaspoons oregano (optional)
  • 1 -2 tablespoon honey (optional-if you want it a little sweeter)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped


  1. Wash and trim tomatoes. Blanch and remove skin if desired, or press through sieve when done cooking.
  2. Combine tomatoes, red peppers,onions, bay leaves, basil,oregano, honey, if using, and salt in a large stockpot and cook slowly for about 1 hour.
  3. Press through a fine sieve. Add garlic, and continue cooking slowly until thick enough to keep its shape on a spoon, about 2 1/2 hours. Stir frequently to keep from sticking.(this could be done in a crockpot-just stir and keep an eye on it).
  4. Pour through sieve(if you left the skins on), then pour into hot 1/2 pint canning jars, leaving 1/2" headspace.
  5. Process 1/2 pints 45 minutes in a boiling water bath.
  6. Makes about 9 1/2 pint jars.