We don’t eat very many things that come in cans. But according to statistics I saw sometime ago, 17% of the average American’s diet comes out of cans.
The one canned item that was a staple in this household for many years was tomato paste. Even after I found out about the dangers of BPA, I was naive enough to think that because I bought organic that BPA would not be used as the liner for the cans. With more evidence coming out all the time on the dangers of BPA, I decided to write to the company to make sure.
Their reply informed me that “Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a critical component of protective coatings used with metal food packaging and provides important quality and safety features to canned foods.” and that “—BPA is not a risk to human health. ”
What a shock that was! My opinion of that company plummeted.
BPA has been linked to serious health problems like cancer, heart disease, intestinal malfunctions, infertility and reproductive issues, increase in body insulin levels, birth defects and behavioral changes in children for a good many years now. It’s not a secret.
The company was either lying or ignorant. And I can’t believe ignorance was a possibility. Furthermore, I’ve read since then that they plan to change their cans to BPA free but don’t have a timeline for it. But even if it’s replaced with another plastic, studies have found that almost all plastics release hormone disruptors at some level.
I have enough problems without inviting more so I like to stay away from canned foods.
(For a short but interesting read you might want to check out the Organic Grace site article on BPA. Some info is from 2008 and 2009 with some 2011 updates about what companies are doing. Even tells about BPA in toothpaste tubes!)
Canned Tomato Paste – A staple
For years I never thought I could get along without canned tomato paste. I’d let my tomatoes cook down on top of the stove. I called it tomato essence. In the winter I would thaw out a package and add a small can of tomato paste. That gave it a more homogenized creamy texture when I wanted a spaghetti sauce.
Roasted Tomatoes to the Rescue
After experimenting with roasted tomatoes a few seasons ago I found out that I didn’t need canned tomato paste to give my sauce a creamy smooth texture. All I do is peel, cook in the oven until almost all the liquid is gone, and stir. You won’t believe how creamy smooth it is — not to mention delicious!
As I mentioned in my post Tomatoes – Roasted – For the Easiest Most Delicious Tomato Sauce, a TMG reader made it even easier. She sliced and cooked the tomatoes with the skins on and then put it in her Vitamix to make it smooth as butter even with those skins. After that she wrote to me and said: “—the result (is) the most flavorful, amazing tomato paste you’ve ever tasted in your life! —”
A Great Way to Use ALL your Excess Tomatoes
Once you discover this for yourself, you’ll want to use every tomato that you don’t eat fresh to fix and freeze plenty of this sauce for winter meals. It takes a lot of tomatoes to make a quart of paste/sauce.
Once you have your homemade roasted sauce on hand you’ll never need to buy another can of tomato paste. If you do run out of your own sauce, try buying an organic tomato sauce in a glass jar. It’s a much healthier choice.
Organic Gardening is easy, effective, efficient — and it’s a lot healthier.
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