You know the drill. It's nearly dinnertime and you're in the kitchen, cooking. Maybe it's spaghetti night. The recipe you're working with calls for tomato paste, so you get out the little red can from the cabinet. Then, you measure it out and mix it in.
And of course, you realize that you now have just enough tomato paste left that you want to save it, but you have no idea what to do with it. This is where I usually wonder who decided the size of tomato paste cans, and if they're responsible for other evil in the world.
Don't despair! You don't have to throw it out. There are a number of things you can use that last bit of tomato paste for that easy and delicious. And we've got them right here for you.
1. Use It To Enhance Stews
Tomato paste is great because it has such a nice, concentrated flavor. A little goes a long way and can change the flavor of your dish a fair bit.
Try using the leftover paste the next time you make a stew - it will add richness and depth to the dish. Here's a great recipe.
2. Salad Dressing
Tomato paste can completely change the flavor and feel of your homemade salad dressings. Instead of simple vinaigrette, try tomato vinaigrette.
Or, if you want to get really fun, have a go at your own French dressing. Here's the recipe.
3. Hot Sauce
If you like hot sauce and haven't made your own, you are missing out. The beauty of hot sauce is that it only calls for a few ingredients, is quick to make, and lasts a long time.
Tomato paste adds the perfect flavor base for a spicy, peppery sauce. Here's a great recipe.
4. Colorful Pasta
Pasta is a little more of a challenge to make than hot sauce, but not by much. And, making pasta is a lot of fun.
Using the last bit of tomato paste in your pasta dough will yield brilliant, beautiful noodles. Here's the recipe.
5. Tomato Paste Ice Cubes
Most importantly, here's the best way to save that last bit of tomato paste. If you're not going to be making stew or pasta in the next day or two, you can store the rest of the tomato paste in ice cube trays in the freezer.
The tomato ice cubes will last a while and are the perfect size to pull out when you need a little in the kitchen.