Use firm, ripe, red tomato. Core the tomato. Score an “x” in the bottom of the tomato. Blanch in boiling water for 5 to 10 seconds. Drain, then immerse in iced water. Remove tomatoes from the water and peel off the loosened skins, using the tip of a small knife. If the tomato is difficult to peel, blanch in boiling water again.
Cut tomato in half crosswise, not through the stem. Taking each half, squeeze out the bitter seeds over a bowl with a sieve to catch the seeds. Remove any core.
Put each tomato half cut-side down and cut into strips, then cut across the strips to dice the flesh. If you're going to let the tomatoes sit for a bit, cover with a little olive oil to prevent them from drying out.
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Running total: $44.80 + $3.50 = $48.30
Butter used so far: 3½ tablespoons