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Tinned tomatoes- chopped/whole/passata, what's the difference?

(11 Posts)
MelbourneMel Mon 08-Aug-16 14:25:04

I've been using chopped tomatoes for years in my cooking without giving it a second thought. However, I've recently bought some cartons of passata and some whole plum tomatoes too. The only difference I found with the passata was that it was a lot more blended than the chopped tomatoes. The whole tomatoes I found to be a lot sweeter and more palatable in sauces and casseroles so I'll probably get then in future instead.

What difference do you mumsnetters find with them and which do you prefer? I've heard that the more expensive tins of chopped tomatoes are less acidic and nicer but unfortunately we eat so much of them that we can only afford the lidl ones.

SageMist Mon 08-Aug-16 14:38:37

I've always assumed that chopped tomatoes are just chopped up whole tomatoes. Never noticed any difference in taste.
I think that passata is sieved tomatoes. Sometimes with extra ingredients, such as onions or garlic. Good when you don't want any tomato lumps in your final dish or if you are lazy like me.

MidnightVelvettheSixth Mon 08-Aug-16 14:40:51

Passata is smooth with no lumps, I prefer it in pasta sauces.

Try adding a teaspoon of sugar to tinned toms to reduce the acidity smile

thereisalwaysone Mon 08-Aug-16 14:42:10

I once went on a cooking course where we only used tinned whole toms that we had to break up using our fingers. They said if you break the seeds when chopping then it can release a bitter taste so perhaps there is a slight taste difference between them?

CaitAgusMadra Wed 10-Aug-16 07:11:19

I always use whole plum tomatoes in sauces. After adding them in, I give them a quick mash with the potato masher to break them up, works really well

GirlWithTheLionHeart Wed 10-Aug-16 07:13:19

Whole plum has best flavour

MissMargie Wed 10-Aug-16 07:31:08

I agree, GirlWithTheLionHeart

HuevosRancheros Wed 10-Aug-16 09:18:13

I use passata in bolognese, chilli etc where a smoother texture is preferable imo.

For a simple tomato sauce for pasta, I use whole plum tomatoes which I crush with my hands as I put them in the pan. The main reason I prefer them over chopped, is that in my experience (and maybe I've just been using cheap tomatoes!) there are often bits of skin/bad bits of tomato in the chopped ones that haven't been removed. By using whole tomatoes, these bits are easy to see and remove smile

Freddieready Wed 10-Aug-16 10:19:46

I honestly think there is a major difference between budget tomatoes and good brands however I agree about price. If you look out for Cirio they are excellent quality, the actual tomato percentage content is higher than average brands and they are often on special at 4 for £2 which is 50p per tin. They are less watery and as such make a richer tastier sauce which does not normally need any puree added. As regards chopped or tinned, I think it is personal preference, I prefer to use whole and I find they break up well once they start to simmer with a couple of pokes!
I think if you try Cirio when they are on offer I honestly think you will feel they are excellent and worth the extra.
Oh, Passata to me is just pureed tomatoes and I have not used them!

Amalfimamma Tue 23-Aug-16 00:57:01

Passata is sweetened tomatoes, usually made with the worse of the harvest because they're pressed and squashed. Whole tomatoes are just stewed toma toes and chopped tomatoes are stewed and chopped.

Someone mentioned cirio, I usually try to avoid them as not all their tomatoes are italianot. I can tell you from firsthand knowledge that the best tomatoes are either asda or tescos own brand because they are italian, from the south of Italy (campania) and are the same tomatoes that we use here, only with a different label on the tin. Same for pasta, asda and tesco pasta are from the de Martino factory famous for its pasta here

cdtaylornats Tue 23-Aug-16 14:09:02

Basically you can go from whole, to chopped, to passata with a blender, but there are to tools to reverse the process.

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