Monday, October 25, 2010

Late Tomatoes

One of my farmers planted a late crop of tomatoes, and I'm canning some for the winter. All of my help comes from books and the internet, so it can get interesting.

I bought 55lbs on Wednesday. I have lost about 10 lbs of tomatoes from waiting too long, and nearly had a ginormous mess on my hands.

The weekend's goal was some whole tomatoes, and the remainder in diced tomatoes. I let the food tell me the amounts; it just depends on the condition of the food. I have learned to core the tomatoes before skinning them - they maintain their shape better. Also, if one or two have split skins the rest should be about ready. It's better to think "loosen the skin" rather than "split the skin." The learning process means I have tomato juice to freeze - I've heard that freezing it means the water will rise to the top, making it so there is less to boil down later. If I could remember the rest of that piece of information, I'd be doing even better!

I canned whole tomatoes on Saturday, diced ones on Sunday. One day's experience cut my time spent in half.

Final Totals:
  • 10 lbs of waste
  • 11 pints of whole tomatoes from roughly 18lbs of small tomatoes
  • 9 pints of diced tomatoes plus one in the freezer (it wasn't quite full)
  • a pot of tomato - soup? sauce? - in the freezer. I already reduced it by half, and will see if I can make it into tomato soup for one night's dinner.
  • enough tomatoes to make tomato & macaroni for lunch today =)

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