July 10, 2007
Yesterday's recipe got me to thinking about tomato paste. This is an ingredient that I love because it adds so much umami flavor with little calories.
I use tomato paste in a tube. Because tomato paste is a great ingredient to have on hand the idea of being able to buy it in tube is simply brilliant and I don't understand why American companies have not followed the Europeans on this. There's a lot of brands on the market, but the one that is most widely available and I have found the best is Amore Double Concentrated Tomato Paste.
This is a rich and silky tomato paste that is packaged in 4.5 ounce tubes. The color is deep red and there's a fine concentrated tomato flavor. Amore also makes a Sun Dried Tomato Paste (not as widely available) that's terrific as well.
While the Amore paste is a bit pricier (at about $3.00 per tube) than my Don't Eat choice of domestic canned tomato paste there's no waste. I don't know how many cans of Hunt's Tomato Paste I have opened and used a couple of tablespoons, only to have it go bad (you know, that green fuzz that grows on top). Some people recommend freezing the leftover in 1 tablespoon batches, but this seems to make the paste grainy.
The one consideration for going to the trouble of using canned tomato paste is that Hunt's does make a No Salt Added version of their canned product. If you're on a very low-sodium diet, this might be a better choice, and you could use the method of freezing the leftovers.