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How to Salt Green Tomatoes to Remove the Solanine

2013-01-18   Views:13

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Cooks use green tomatoes, those that have not ripened to a red colour, for certain dishes requiring a tougher tomato meat and less sweet taste. Green tomatoes, as with all tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant and other nightshade plants, contain a chemical e

How to Salt Green Tomatoes to Remove the Solanine

Cooks use green tomatoes, those that have not ripened to a red colour, for certain dishes requiring a tougher tomato meat and less sweet taste. Green tomatoes, as with all tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant and other nightshade plants, contain a chemical element called solanine. Though it is toxic in very large doses, solanine is a naturally occurring chemical. Many people like to have the solanine removed prior to cooking or eating, as it can give vegetables a bitter taste.

Skill level:Moderate

Things you need

Salt (coarse ground or Kosher)Colander or strainerKnifeBaking trayPaper towels

Instructions

1 Determine how many tomatoes you will need. You will need to slice down the tomatoes, so opt for a recipe or dish that calls for cubed or sliced green tomatoes. Peel the skin off each tomato and then slice the tomatoes to the thickness desired.

2 Lay green tomato slices out in a single layer on a baking tray that has been lined with paper towels. Sprinkle coarse or Kosher salt over the tomatoes, making sure to cover the entire surface area. Allow the salt to help remove the solanine. The thickened juice running on the paper towels will let you know this method of "sweating" is working.

3 Turn the tomatoes over onto new paper towels and repeat the salting process. Allow the salt to remove the solanine for five to 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the tomato slices.

4 Transfer all tomato slices to a colander and rinse the remainder of the salt and solanine off the tomatoes by running the slices under cool water. Flip the tomatoes to make sure you get the salt off both sides.

Tips and warnings

You can remove solanine in the same manner for potatoes and eggplant.

Test a slice of green tomato before using in recipes to make sure the flavour did not change due to the salting.

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