8/23/15

Pressing On with the Tomatoes

Yesterday I spent the entire day processing tomatoes. I'm used to small batch canning...no more than about 5-8 pounds at a time. Last year, I went on a tomato spree, but I only had 20 lbs. when I started. This year's 40 lb. haul is giving me a run for my money.


I had in mind to do a bunch of other stuff while I waited for the sauce to cook down, and then it has to process for 40 minutes. I started with a double batch (8 lbs. of tomatoes), and while that cooked, I started another single batch (because I don't have a pot large enough for another double batch. When the original batch had cooked down enough, I threw the single batch in with that and continued cooking it down. And while that was cooking, I started yet another batch. As you might guess with all of that going on, my hands were busy with tomatoes the whole time. I was blanching, peeling, seeding, chopping, mixing, and stirring, before even a single jar entered into the game. When all was said and done, I had a yield of 7 1/2 quarts.


That was enough for one day, and it was nearly 4:00 p.m. when I finished. While I was waiting for the last jars to process, I weighed and divided up the remaining tomatoes. If my yield remains the same, I should get another 11 quarts from them and a bonus batch of salsa.

I'm kind of curious to try these Roma tomatoes in a batch of salsa. The other batch was from our own home-grown Super Marzanoes.


I've always wondered if we're growing the right tomato. It would be interesting to taste the two salsas side by side and see which tomato we like best. Certainly, choosing the best salsa tomato is a worthwhile endeaver any time and any place. I'll say this: the Romas have more seeds, while the Super Marzanoes are almost completely seed free. Take a look at that:


As I said yesterday, it's all tomatoes all the time this weekend, and maybe a few more tomorrow too. Time to get cooking. Oh, and in case you're wondering, this is the recipe I'm using for the Chunky Basil Pasta Sauce, and this is the recipe for the Basic Tomato Salsa.

6 comments from clever and witty friends:

Sheila said...

Love to see anything freshly canned; your tomatoes are beautiful!

Kate said...

Wow, that's a lot of sauce! Hope you can wrap up all the canning so you can get back to stitching.

gayle said...

We've got a big box of tomatoes in the dining room, just waiting for us. Your pictures are making me drool...
Gotta get to work!

Anonymous said...

Looks delish! Have you thought of using a food mill for that amount? Just drop the tomatoes in a pot to boil, mash once in a while, then put through the mill to remove skins. Some seeds get through, and you get a puree but it saves hours. The food mill also makes the best mashed potatoes - keep it out for dinner!

quiltzyx said...

Sounds like a lot of scary work to me!!

Brown Family said...

It may be a lot of work now, but a big reward later on!