Monday, August 31, 2009

My first lesson in canning!

This is part of about 40 tomatoes, nice sized ones too, that I took to my moms and she showed me how to can. She says that there are LOTS of methods to canning that work. So I am showing you how she does it and learning along the way.

I am pretty sure my mom did not expect me to show up with any where near the number of tomatoes I'll have to see why in tomorrows post.
First, we poured boiling water over the tomatoes, stirred them up for a couple of minutes till the skins started coming undone.

Cool them off.


We were making sauce, so we pureed them. But I might try salsa if I am motivated enough to try this again.

Then we simmered them in a stock pot for several hours. I guess to reduce some of the water content and to sterilize the contents.

Then we brought in the stock pot and had a canning pot for the jars to be steamed/sterilized and lids to be boiled/sterilized.

Sterilizing the Jars.

Poor sauce into hot jars.

Clean rim before adding lid and ring.

Boil canning jars for about 30 minutes.

We had 8 quarts...but the one with the circle around it on the right never did "pop", even after boiling it twice. So my mom kept it to use right away and I brought 7 quarts home!

This was not difficult but was a lot of work. I don't know if I will or will not be motivated to do it by myself...but if I do it will be next year, when baby is here and older! But it will be nice to have these to use and know they came from my own garden!
I did add some garlic to it, and cut some basil from my moms garden to add to it as well!
My next post will be about my moms garden...In the woods!


  1. Shawn Ann, those are beautiful! Aren't you proud? You should be.

    May I suggest though, that you do follow the new safety guidelines when canning tomatoes (Ball Blue Book) and add 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice to each pint jar, 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice to each quart jar to make sure you have proper acidity. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Adjust two-piece caps. Process pints 35 minutes, quarts 40 minutes. If you are afraid the lemon juice might add a flavor you don't like (I don't notice it), just add a little bit of sugar to counteract the taste...a half teaspoon or so.

  2. Very good! You'll really enjoy eating that sauce during the winter months. That granny sure does give some great advice, i'll have to remember that one.

  3. Thanks Granny, I'll have to remember the lemon juice if I try this again. And the time. I am pretty sure we did those other things you suggest.

  4. Congratulations on your first canning! Those jars look beautiful!

  5. Too cool! The whole process seems intimidating to me... It does seem like a lot of work, but think of how yummy it will all taste! ;-)

  6. Thanks for this post. We started canning last year. I have been going by a mixture of what we find on the web and verbal advice from a farming couple. I love how you poured hot boiling water over the tomatoes. I was dumping them a few at a time in boiling water then a ice bath. I will have to try it with my peaches next year. I canned 9 bushels and this would have saved me hours. Oh well live and learn. Be warned after last spring I said canning was not worth the time. Yet it is addictive especially after eating a jar of home grown sauce in January!

  7. I had a glitch in my pc so, sorry if this is a repeat...

    I tagged you for a Meme Award as "thanks and kudos" for sharing your gardening experiences with us. Check out my blog to see wha'cha gotta do. Cheers!