Tip from the test kitchen

The height of tomato season is a great time for making bigbatches of sauce or putting up jars of fresh tomatoes. Mostrecipes, however, ask for peeled fruit. The following techniquemakes this job easy.

1. In a 5-quart pan over high heat, bring 3 ½ quartswater to a boil. Set a large bowl of ice water nearby.

2. Use a paring knife to cut out the stem at the top of eachtomato. Then carve a shallow X in the bottom (blossom end) ofeach.

3. Working in batches of three, plunge the tomatoes into theboiling water. Let cook until skins begin to wrinkle and loosen, 5to 20 seconds.

4. Lift tomatoes from boiling water with a slotted spoon andgently drop into the ice bath.

5. When tomatoes have cooled, remove from the ice bath andgently pull away the skins, beginning at the points created by theX.

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