As the days grow noticeably shorter, now is the time to start stocking up, and canning tomatoes is high on my list. This week’s haul from the farmers’ market included just a few from the extraordinary variety available, each as inspiring as the next:
• Small plum tomatoes (bottom): Principe Borghese for making into a rich, homemade ketchup; also good for sauces, drying, and roasting.
• Yellow tomatoes: three kinds—yellow peach, yellow blush plum, and sungolds—to be made into a sunny tomato sauce or winter soup.
• Large plum tomatoes (upper left corner): meaty San Marzanos for piling into jars and canning whole.
Amounts will vary, depending on the characteristic of the tomato. Once cooked and run through a mill to separate out the seeds and peels, 8 pounds of the small plum tomatoes resulted in 1 gallon of tomato puree. 10 pounds of the larger plum tomatoes gave me 6 quarts of peeled, whole tomatoes, and the three varieties of yellow tomatoes resulted in 3½ quarts of lightly reduced sauce.
To help you stock your own pantry full of summer’s tomatoes:
Resources for Home Preserving Tomatoes, National Center for Home Food Preservation
• Instructions for canning, freezing, drying, and pickling tomatoes, also making tomato preserves.
Let’s Preserve: Tomatoes and Canning and Freezing Tomatoes and Making Salsa
• Guidelines from the Extension Service on quantities, processing times and temperature, and recipes in handy downloadable leaflets.
Freezer Tomato Sauce, Leite’s Culinaria
• If you have the freezer space, a quick alternative to canning.
Canning 101: Tomato Float, Sauce Separation and Loss of Liquid, Food in Jars
• Because it happens.
Also check our new Food Preservation resource page as we continue to add links!