Tomato Harvest Wrap-up, and Confessions of a Beginning Canner

by Rebekahcooked up on October 10, 2012

Well, I am pretty sure I’ve picked the last of the tomatoes that will be usable. There is a limit on our beautiful, unending sunny summer, and that limit is Friday. The rain is a-comin’.

We harvested just over 40 pounds of tomatoes from our garden this year – a huge success! Too many to use at one time. So I am trying to find ways to make them last all year. This was my train of thought: I think they are too sweet for salsa, and honest, we do not use a lot of canned sauce – we usually make a really simple one out canned tomatoes – AHA!

I just canned them as-is. Now they are perfect!

I still have about 6 or 7 pounds left to use., so I still have more to figure out – I’m thinking that I will dry them, though.

This is only my second time canning, and although the second time around was much easier than the first, I do not consider myself an expert AT ALL.  Please refer to this excellent tutorial that I followed. As a beginning canner, I would offer a few tips, though, to other beginners:

  • Know going in that it is going to be a HUGE mess, because of the seeds, juice, etc. – and try not to let it bother you! It looks bad but cleanup will be easier than you think.
  • Go ahead and spring for the gear like a funnel, a magnet wand and a can gripper – those tools exist for a reason!
  • Wash your hands anytime you touch something not related to your canning project. You can’t be too careful here!
  • Get a GIANT pot. The stock pot you have is not going to be big enough, sadly 🙁
  • Don’t let the process scare you or intimidate you away from canning your own stuff! It is hard at first but canning became so much easier even the second time I tried it.

I hope that helps! I am going to keep working on my canning – I have 7 empty 1/2 pint jars that could probably use some tomato jam or something. I am itching to fill ’em up!

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1 Comment

  1. Check out for a great canning recipe for your left over green unripe tomatoes-green tomato curry sauce. And a girlfriend and I over the summer made a tomato basil jam that is amazing!

    Comment by Demarie — October 10, 2012 at 6:52 pm

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