Saturday, August 11, 2012

Canning Tomatoes

Every summer I can tomatoes.  I think it's because my Mother always did and I was raised to be thrifty and prepare for winter by canning produce.  Now, I only can tomatoes, and I must admit I don't like it much, even sometimes hate doing it.  But ~ still every year I plant 24 tomato plants so I can preserve them for winter meals.  My Mother tells me not to do it anymore, but I can't seem to give it up.
It's a long process starting with washing up the jars and getting everything out and set up.
I've had the jars for years and years and they're always so pretty washed up and ready to go.

And then there are the tomatoes.  This basket may not look that big, but its almost two feet long and it's loaded.

There is something beautiful about tomatoes with their many and varied uses in meals.

And here is my little bee friend to help me with my chores.

Now, I'm off to actually can, instead of taking and editing pictures.  Can you tell I'm procrastinating?  I've done everything this morning from laundry to cleaning out kitchen drawers, when my first priority was supposed to be canning.  
Here are the tomatoes going through the hot water bath, which is followed by the cold water bath to loosen the skins.
Canning is a very hot process and it usually comes at the hottest part of the summer.  Thank goodness today the temperature barely made it into the 70's.

I got so involved, I forgot to take more pics of the process, but here is the finished product.

Aren't they beautiful?  I never tire of looking at the finished product.  There is a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment when I see the jars all lined up that always makes the work worth it all.  I've been know to leave them set on the counter for a week because I love to look at them.  Maybe that's why I keep doing a chore I don't enjoy very much.

All in all ~ I ended up with 18 quarts of tomatoes.  That's the largest batch I've ever done at one time and sometimes more than I do in an entire summer, and it's only the first wave of tomatoes.  I think I'll be eating a lot of chili, spaghetti. and sausage-tortellini soup this winter.

Linking with
The Tablescaper for Seasonal Sundays
Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday


Anita said...

Beautiful post!! My mother cans like crazy and I have never liked it but I really want to do it. Yours look beautiful!!

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

Canning tomatoes is a tedious job but it is so worth it. You will be glad you did when winter comes. I used to can them but don't anymore. But I do miss them.
Just read your last post and loved it.

Michele @ The Nest at Finch Rest said...

And possibly even sharing with a local blogger buddy?

Well done, looks awesome.

My daughter wants to learn how to do this, next time you do it call me and I will get you some help, ok?


The French Hutch said...

This is a post close to my heart! I love tomatoes and I'm always on the hunt for the best vendor at the farmer's market. My mom canned fresh veggies and fruits. I've done some freezing but never canning. I remember the fun I thought it was as a child and the satisfaction of the finished product. Your basket of tomatoes photographed beautifully and I dare say the best satisfaction is when you open up those jars on a cold winter day! Visiting over from SS……..

The French Hutch

Anonymous said...

Oh Cindy I so wish I had enough tomatoes to can!! I used to make tons of salsa and can it every year. 24 tomato plants!! Wow guess I need to plant more if I want to can!

Got a few things brought to the shop for the new space today and picked elderberrys to make some jam. It is yummy.

bee blessed

The Tablescaper said...

I love this post. I've never put up tomatoes but have always wanted to. I love the idea of them stacked on the shelf, ready for winter.

Great to have you be a part of Seasonal Sundays.

- The Tablescaper

Desire Empire said...

I think that is fantastic. That you grow your own and preserve them. They must taste so wonderful. You are inspiring me here to have a go at it. I am starting a vege patch for our southern hemisphere Spring and plan to plant tomatoes to try and get back the beautiful tasting ones I ate as a child.

Sue said...

Looks wonderful, Cindy! You'll be enjoying the fruits of your labor in the dead of winter! :-) Sue

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