Monday, September 10, 2012

Canning Success, Sort Of

Well, The Wife asked all afternoon yesterday "What are you going to do with all of these tomatoes?" Pushing aside a secret desire to throw them at passing cars I said I was going to can them. Well, in our stupidity we decided to start canning them with a couple of pre- mixed bags of pizza spaghetti sauce stuff and see what we got. We gathered about 12 lbs. of tomatoes (we measured the weight by weighing ourselves on the bathroom scale, not a pretty sight, then grabbing the tomatoes and weighing ourselves again) and started the process (proesess for my Canadian friends.)

Now I have seen this device in passing sitting on a shelf in the kitchen, not giving it too much attention. That changed when I used it last night. It does a good job but takes some effort. That's when The Wife made a tactical error and said that they make a mechanical, automatic machine to do this now. Hmmmmmm.

Well, we got all of the tomatoes strained (and Bengayed) then proceeded to cook them with the mix for about 45 minutes. After we let it simmer for a while we water- bathed them for another 45 minutes in the pint jars. At about 10:20 pm we were rewarded with 9 pints of sauce ready to use.  Since we have more tomatoes coming on (not much in the Roma variety though; damn determinate plants!) we'll probably make some more plus we have a salsa mix to try. A trip to the farmer's market will help with some beans we want to get canned too. 

The final result.

I've already started planning next years' garden and plan on making it a little bigger (after the pool, I know) but it sucks living in sandy soil. All raised beds and that takes time. I also plan on compost bins, outbuilding, water containers and a greenhouse. I finally have some room in a yard and I'm taking advantage of it. Get enough shit in the yard I won't have to mow! 

I have a nice gold trip coming up this weekend with my best buddy from WV, his brother and his dad to Olde Mill in Laurel Fork, VA. We call it Groundhog Mountain as one of the guys that introduced it to us many years ago grew up in the area and that's what they called it. We rent a cabin for the weekend and golf all we can. Make sure you go to the Golf link. There's nothing around, not even cell service! Looking forward to it. You may hear from me again before then, maybe not. 


  1. I'm with you on the soil, except we have hard, heavy clay. The raised beds do take time...and money.

  2. We had that when we lived in WV. We called it red rock. Here it's sandy as can be. And the damn knats love it.