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Friday, August 8, 2014

Canning: The Recipes

As I talked about in my Gardening 2.0 Update I have used up all my vegetables by either cooking, canning, or freezing them. 
 
Freezing is the easy part especially with tomatoes.  I simply wipe them clean with a damp cloth and lay in a freezer bag.  Once full I freeze...ready for winter and American Chinese.


 
Canning isn't so much that it's hard but it is labor intensive and very time consuming.  My spaghetti sauce takes all day or if you're like me all one Saturday and then all a Tuesday night.  I refuse to let any of my crop go to waste and I'm pretty greedy so really giving it away isn't an option.  I feel that we have worked so hard for it all and I also really would like my cans to last us a full year until I can do it again next year.  This is my first ever canning experience and I couldn't be more thrilled with how it has gone. So far all batches has sealed off and are being stored in my ever crowding pantry. 
 
First up was the spaghetti sauce.  I made two batches just days apart and I got a total of 20 quarts.  One wasn't quite full so we had it the next night over some spaghetti and topped with sauteed chicken.  It was fantastic and I can't wait to dig into it in the winter months.






~~~ Spaghetti Sauce ~~~

My recipe is adapted from HERE!  I really searched high and low for a recipe that sounded like it had all the ingredients that we would like and this one jumped out at me.
 

Ingredients:
  • 25 lbs of tomatoes
  • 4 green bell peppers
  • 4 onions
  • 4 cans (6 oz) tomato paste
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 palm full of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 18 tbs bottled lemon juice
How to do it:

  1. Blanch and peel all 25 pounds of tomatoes.  As you peel them put them in your cooking pot.  I used two large pots and divided all my ingredients in half as I didn't have one pot big enough.
  2. In a food processor finely chop green pepper, garlic, and onion
  3. Put in pot with tomatoes and add all ingredients up to the bay leaves (leave out the lemon juice)
  4. Bring ingredients to a boil then reduce to a simmer. 
  5. Simmer 3 to 4 hours uncovered, stirring regularly to prevent sticking on bottom
  6. When your sauce is in it's last hour of cooking prepare your jars, and seals by heating them until simmering but not boiling
  7. Can sauce using 2 tbs of lemon juice in the bottom of each jar
  8. Replace jars to canner
  9. Once all jars are full and have lids and bands in place process in a boiling water canner for 40 minutes covered. 
  10. Turn off and let cool in canner for 5 minutes
  11. Remove jars careful not to tip them over and let sit on untouched for 24 hours
  12. Label and store for use

This recipe yields 9 quart jars
_________________________________________________________________________________


**** Salsa ****

I totally made up this recipe.  After my spaghetti sauce adventures I had a pretty good idea of the quantity of each ingredient.  I also asked several co-workers what they put in theirs and made it up from there.

Ingredients:

  • 25 lbs of tomatoes
  • 3 onions
  • 5 large green bell peppers
  • 8 to 12 jalapeno peppers
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 (6 oz) cans of tomato paste
  • 2 to  3 bunches of fresh cilantro
  • 2 palms of salt
  • approx 1 cup bottled lemon juice
How to do it:

  1. Blanch and peel all 25 pounds of tomatoes. As you peel them put them in your cooking pot. I used two large pots and divided all my ingredients in half as I didn't have one pot big enough.
  2. In a food processor finely chop onions, bell peppers, garlic, cilantro, and seeded jalapenos. ( I left the seeds in a couple jalapenos for a little spice) depending on how hot you want it is how many I would de-seed.
  3. To cut down cooking time since you don't necessarily need a long lasting home style flavor also food process all your tomatoes.
  4. All all ingredients in a pot and bring to boil
  5. Simmer uncovered for 1 1/2 hours
  6. When your sauce is in it's last hour of cooking prepare your jars, and seals by heating them until simmering but not boiling
  7. Can sauce using 1 tsp of lemon juice in the bottom of each jar
  8. Replace jars to canner
  9. Once all jars are full and have lids and bands in place process in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes covered.
  10. Turn off and let cool in canner for 5 minutes
  11. Remove jars careful not to tip them over and let sit on untouched for 24 hours
  12. Label and store for use
 
I hope everyone enjoys these as much as I am in the coming year.

 

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