How to Can Tomatoes
One of our favorite things about our new house is our giant garden. Casey really loves to work in it, and I really love the stuff we get from it. My all time favorite is tomatoes. I grew up with tomato sandwiches and my sister and I used to eat them like they were apples, with salt, of course. Our town is even famous for our tomatoes. Our annual town get-together is called “tomato days”.
Since Casey has done such a great job with our garden this year, we’ve got tomatoes coming out of our ears! So I got busy and bottled our bunches of tomatoes.
Side note: Do any of you wish we lived in the “I love Lucy” days, where “housewives” wore aprons and scarves in their hair, and doing things like bottling tomatoes was an everyday thing? Yeah, I totally wish I lived in those days. Except with dishwashers and washing machines and my Dyson vacuum.
Would you like to bottle your own tomatoes? Here’s how:
Start by boiling a large pot of water.
Place tomatoes in the boiling water for about 30 seconds to a minute. The riper they are, the shorter you’ll need. This will make them easy to peel.
Immediately dump the tomatoes into cool water. I use one side of my sink.
Then core, peel, and quarter your tomatoes. This should be pretty easy to do. If it isn’t, stick the tomatoes into boiling water for another minute.
Fill up your quart jars with the quartered tomatoes. Squish them in there until it’s full to the neck of the jar. You can use wide-mouth jars if you have them, but I just use regular quart jars because they are cheaper.
Once you’ve got all of your jars full of tomatoes, add water to the neck of the jar- just where the curve is. Also add a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of sugar.
Wipe off the mouth of the jar and put on your lid and ring.
Place your filled and sealed jars into a giant pot of boiling water. The water should be over the top of the jars. Boil for 45 minutes.
Once you’ve boiled your jars, let them sit on the counter for 24 hours. Then check and make sure the tops have popped. That’s how you’ll know they’re sealed.
Make sure you date your lids so you know what year they were preserved. And enjoy your tomatoes all year long!
You will want to store your tomatoes at room temperature, out of direct light. I have mine on a shelf in my pantry- but not the top shelf where the light shines on them. They should last you a few years, if your family doesn’t gobble them up as fast as mine does!
I love to use bottled tomatoes for salsa, spaghetti sauce, and soups.
Next week I will share my favorite recipe using bottled tomatoes.