this is a bit overdue but i've been meaning to post about my first ever tomato canning experience. i picked up over 60 lbs of organic (mostly) tomatoes seconds (several varieties and colors) from two local farms and three of us split the haul and did the canning together. you can see how beautiful the red, orange and yellow varieties of tomatoes look when all are canned together.
we started at 11 am and finished at about 5 pm with cleanup (but still had to wait on two batches). we went with whole tomatoes and tomato juice to keep things simple no sauces, diced, salsa etc. we meant business!
our yeild was aprox. 9 quarts (6 whole tomatoe/3 juice) and 2-3 pints per person (per 20 lbs). not bad!
our reward while we cleaned up and waited on the last batches was the freshest tomato juice bloody mary's ever! they were fantastic and i'm so glad we didn't waste the juice! all the tomato "trash" went to the compost pile as well so nothing was wasted.
last year i made a promise to myself to can tomato's since i don't have a large freezer but i also tried my hand at peaches, peach sauce, blackberry sauce and blackberry jam. i experimented with peach and berry infused vodka and vinegars which i still have on hand and they turned out fantastic. economically speaking i'm not sure if it's worth canning but i don't think that's the point. it was fun working together with my mom and my friend on this project and learning a new skill that is certainly useful. i'll probably be making some apple butter and apple sauce before the season is over. i'll certainly be enjoying these goodies all winter long!
*ps. a word of caution~we had one accident at the end of our long day when i set a jar just out of the water onto the granite counter top without a towel. explosion, big mess but no one was hurt. inexperience is the best teacher!