The Easiest Way to Peel Tomatoes

You don't actually need a peeler to get the skin off these soft fruits

With carrots, apples and potatoes, it's simple: Just grab your favorite peeler and go to work. But softer fruits like tomatoes are no match for kitchen tools. If you have one tomato, you can spear it with a fork and hold it over a gas flame, similar to charring vegetables indoors, to loosen the skin. But with one pot of boiling water, you can peel a dozen tomatoes at once. It's the same way you'd peel one (or two, or seven), and, no, it's not a magic act.

Here's the simple three-step method for peeling tomatoes:

① Prepare an ice bath and set aside. Using a small knife, carefully score a small "X" into the bottom of each tomato.

② Bring a pot of water to a boil. When it's bubbling, drop the tomatoes in. After about 30 seconds, or when the skins start to peel back, remove them with a spoon and drop them into the ice bath.

③ After they've cooled for about a minute, take them out of the ice bath. The skins will slink right off when you peel back, starting from the "X."

Now that you've gotten your tomatoes to, ahem, show a little skin, use them here:

• Start your day with Middle Eastern shakshuka.

• This beefsteak tomato sandwich is what summer dreams are made of.

• Make the season last by canning your tomatoes.