If you’re interested in learning to preserve your own food, can tomatoes. If you love the flavor of real sun ripened home grown tomatoes and miss it in the winter, can tomatoes. Worried about BPA in liners of canned tomatoes? Can your own tomatoes! If harvested tomatoes are building up on the counter, can tomatoes.
Canning tomatoes is one of the simplest recipes, is a great way to gain comfort in canning, preserves that amazing taste of in season tomatoes, and is easy to use for soups, chili, and sauce throughout the winter. Here’s how:
1) Check your supplies: you’ll need tomatoes, a pot big enough to fit all of your tomatoes, a ladle, a funnel, clean Ball jars (we use mostly quarts), lids, caps, a large canning pot, and a rack. Canning supplies and equipment can usually be found at your local hardware store in August and September.
3) Bring to a boil and then simmer until air is released (it will be foamy at first. Then juice/liquid will start to look clear). Add salt if desired.
4) Ladle hot tomatoes into ball jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Put on lids, gently screwing on caps (they should not be cranked tight, but shouldn’t be so loose that tomatoes could leak out).
5) “Process” in a boiling-water bath for 30 minutes. This means: bring water to a boil in your canning pot, put your jars in your canning rack, and then submerge your jars/rack in the boiling water for 30 minutes.
6) Let cool. After 24 hours, rims may be removed to store.
Want to learn more about canning? The Ball Blue Book is a great resource that covers all of the basics, and more! Also try asking your elders – canning was a common household task for most of our grandparents. Wondering how to use your canned tomatoes? Heat and add pesto for a yummy tomato basil soup. Try as a base for chili. Or add a can of tomato paste to turn your tomatoes into sauce without needing to boil for hours. Enjoy!