Canning Tomatoes

Roma Canning Tomatoes
Roma Canning Tomatoes

Since my various heirloom tomato plants have all decided this year to either get the blight or under-produce, I ordered 20 pounds of roma tomatoes from the Lancaster Farm Fresh CSA for canning. They arrived with the rest of my CSA delivery, in a very strong box. Growing up in Indiana, a least a couple of Saturdays a year were spent over the hot stove, cooking down tomatoes and filling the pressure cooker. I’m terrified of pressure cookers, so I make my tomato sauce in a water bath on the stove.

Cooking down the sauce
Cooking down the sauce

I hate unnecessary cooking steps, and I’ve got no problem with seeds and skins. The idea of having to remove them either through a Victoria Strainer or a food mill is enough to make me entirely uninterested in canning tomatoes. Instead, I just quarter them, throw them in the blender, and turn them into sauce, which goes straight into the pot to cook down. I leave my plain sauce a little thing, since it reduce someday in the future when I’m cooking with it. A splash of lemon juice, into the jars, and into the hot water batch for 30 minutes.

Tomato sauce with garlic and onions
Tomato sauce with garlic and onions

I made two separate batches and canned them one after another. The first, plain tomato sauce. The second (pictured above) a thicker sauce full of onions, heavy on garlic, and with just a bit of basil. Can’t wait to open up the jar in the middle of winter and fill the kitchen with heady garlic fragrance.


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Erin Gautsche cooking in and eating out, traveling and learning; curious and vegetarian.

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