Canning Tomatoes

The first step in canning your precious tomatoes, is to get your water started boiling, especially if you have an older stove such as ours, because heating large quantities of water can take a while.

You'll need enough water boiling in the canner, so that your jars will be covered with one to two inches, and a large pot so that you can blanch the tomatoes, and peel the skin off... it really isn't necessary to peel your tomatoes, my grandmother never did. But if, like my Mom, you enjoy sitting down and eating tomatoes right out of the jar, you'll probably want to go ahead and peel them so that you don't end up with tomato skins getting stuck between your teeth. :o)

You will also need to put your lids in a steaming pot of water to sterilize them, but be sure not to bring them to a boil, as boiling can damage them, and you may not get a good seal on your jars.

You can see that I'm using both red and yellow tomatoes, but primarily red ones... the yellow just gives a nice added color to the final product, and the canning jars look really pretty sitting in the pantry.

I have a bunch of cherry tomatoes as well, and will be using them to make a sauce.

To blanch your tomatoes, just place them in the large pot of boiling water for a minute or so, until you see the skins begin to crack.... no longer, or the tomatoes will start to cook, and will turn mushy.

They do make a special basket for this, but I don't have one... I just use a large spoon with holes in it to scoop out the tomatoes, and place them in my colander, and then run cold water over them to stop them from cooking.