Monday, October 19, 2009

The Great Tomato Debacle

A few weeks ago I did something stupid something very very stupid. I bought 2 boxes of tomatoes to make salsa from a produce club I belong to. The produce club is from Marquita Farms and they sell produce in the city when they have an extra large harvest that they can't sell at restaurants or at farmers markets. So I decided that canning some salsa and fresh tomatoes seemed like a great idea. Which it probably would have been if I hadn't bought 2 boxes of tomatoes filled to the brim with tomatoes which would go bad if not canned or eaten soon. I way underestimated how many tomatoes would come in a box.

See the thing is that a week before this tomato incident I had already canned some tomatoes and made some sun dried tomatoes so this bunch of tomatoes was defiantly in excess. I picked up the tomatoes on Thursday afternoon and spent pretty much the rest of the weekend processing the tomatoes. I boiled tomatoes, peeled tomatoes, boiled jars, boiled lids and boiled the lids some more. Do you notice how much boiling there is going on here? My kitchen was a mess of pots, jars and tomatoes. I made raw packed tomatoes, salsa, Italian crushed tomatoes, regular crushed tomatoes and I ate tomatoes all weekend also. At the end of the weekend I was sick of tomatoes really really sick of tomatoes, but I am grateful that I will have tomatoes for the pantry.

Almost done canning the second box of tomatoes

From the left salsa, raw-pack tomatoes and crushed Italian tomatoes

I must admit though that those tomatoes look so nice all lined up. I ended up with 7 quarts of raw packed tomatoes, 7 pints of salsa and 8 pints of crushed tomatoes. If you ever feel like attempting canning tomatoes or canning food in any capacity check out the National Center for Home Food Preservation. These are the guidelines I use to ensure my canned goods are safe and they even have tasty recipes which I also use. I will NOT be canning tomatoes anytime soon, but I might consider making some jelly soon. A small batch of course.

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