Sunday, September 18, 2011


Just over a week ago, I bought about 25 lb of tomatos on sale, added them to the ones from our CSA shares, and spent two days cooking and canning tomato sauce.

Plum tomatoes fresh from the farmstand

First, I washed and quartered the tomatoes, then I cooked them in a stockpot for about 2 hours until they were completely soft and at least a third of the liquid had evaporated.

I then pureed the tomatoes with a food mill like this one, though there are much better models out there (note to self:  stop ogling things on the Lehman's site!).  Next, I sterilized quart canning jars in the dishwasher and the lids and rings in a pot on the stovetop (leaving them in boiling water for about 10 mins).  Finally, the jars were filled with tomato sauce and two tablespoons of lemon juice before I canned them in a hot water bath.  The lemon adds acidity to the tomatoes, which the internet tells me helps prevent the tomatoes from going off.

yummy tomato sauce!

the first four quarts of a total nine

The biggest challenge in this process was getting pictures that weren't a garish orange color. I don't think our kitchen light favors the tomato... and I didn't want to use a flash.

Bonus artsy shot - lets pretend it wasn't just totally out of focus!

I am debating whether to get another box of tomatoes (assuming the cold nights haven't killed them all already) this week.  If I do, I will probably can one batch more and freeze the rest.  In years past I have only frozen sauce, but this year we seem to be short on freezer space.  Also, I love opening the pantry door and looking at all that beautiful food... a little splash of red may be just what I need to look at come February, oh yes, I think so!

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