Tomato essence – a basic recipe by Hans Haas

After being discovered in the Americas, the tomato slowly made its way to Europe. Today it is the most popular vegetable in Germany with consumption at over 20 kilos per person each year.


1.25 kg tinned tomatoestomatenessenz_zutaten
500 g very ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped, core removed
3 ½ l water
2-3 handfuls of crushed ice
1 onion, roughly chopped
1 ½ tbsp sea salt
1 tbsp sugar
½ tsp ground black pepper
2 sprigs of thyme
1 small sprig of rosemary
6-7 stems of parsley
6-7 stems of basil
1 bay leaf
1 garlic clove, pressed


Tips from Hans Haas:

  • Even if this seems like a large quantity, it is better not to reduce it down as the flavour of the essence only develops really intensively with these quantities. It is a flavoursome base for soups, sauces, stocks and also – added in ice cube sized portions – the icing on the cake in terms of flavour for many other dishes.
  • The essence is suitable for freezing and preserving. If stored in the fridge in jars, the essence can be kept for approximately 10 to 14 days. Alternatively, after cooling, it can be frozen in small portions.


Preparation (c. 3 hours, inclusive 2,5 hours simmering):

tomatenessenz_1Roughly chop the rough tomatoes and remove the cores. Then add these with the tin of tomatoes to a large saucepan and cover with the water and crushed ice. Now stir the remaining ingredients into the pan – which are the roughly-chopped onion, the thyme, rosemary, parsley, basil and bay leaf, the pressed garlic clove, black pepper, salt and sugar.


tomatenessenz_2Now allow all of the ingredients to come to the boil and then simmer gently for around 2 to 3 hours until the essence has become clear. For this reason it’s important not to stir the essence once it has come to the boil. When the essence is ready it is clear and you’ll be able to see through to the base of the pan.


tomatenessenz_3The final stage is to pour the tomato essence through a sieve lined with a cloth strainer, e.g. a piece of muslin.

Enjoy using this essence in a number of recipes!

About Hans Haas

Hans Haas has been awarded a variety of honours and prizes for his culinary skills. He is one of the best chefs in Europe and has successfully run the "birthplace of German nouvelle cuisine" - restaurant Tantris in Munich since 1991.


Tomato essence – a basic recipe by Hans Haas — 2 Comments

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