How to Peel and Seed Fresh Tomatoes


Some tomato tips from Journal News contributor Viviane Bauquet Farre. You can find her blog at

Step 1: Bring 4 to 6 quarts of water to a boil, depending on how many tomatoes you need to peel. While waiting for the water to boil, prepare a large bowl of cold water and set aside.

Then, with a paring knife, make an incision in the shape of a cross around the entire surface of each tomato.

Step 2: Once the water is boiling, plunge the tomatoes in the water and boil for 15 to 45 seconds until the skins start to peel back on their own (the riper the tomato, the faster the skins will peel back).

Immediately transfer the tomatoes to the bowl filled with cold water and let stand for a minute or two until cooled.

Step 3: Drain the tomatoes and remove the skins; they should come right off.

Step 4: Once peeled, quarter the tomatoes and cut off the core and hard, white parts around the core with a paring knife.

Hold the quarter over a medium sieve placed over a bowl and seed each quarter by pushing the seeds and their juices out with your thumb.

Step 5: With a silicone spatula, stir the seeds until all the juices have been strained through the sieve into the bowl.

Discard seeds.

Photos by Viviane Bauquet Farre.


About Author

Liz Johnson is content strategist for The Journal News and, and the founding editor of lohudfood, formerly know as Small Bites. As food editor, she won awards from the New York News Publishers Association, the Association of Food Journalists and the Associated Press. She lives in Nyack with her husband and daughter on a tiny suburban lot they call their farm — with fruit trees, an herb garden, and a yardful of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, shallots, cucumbers, zucchini, radishes, cabbage, peppers, Brussels sprouts and carrots and four big blueberry bushes.

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