This week I really needed to get to about 50 lbs of tomatoes that had been sitting around for a bit. So I buckled down, told myself to do it over two days … it finally got done! Additionally I’m very happy with the results. The recipe I used is here.
These tomatoes were very meaty and had little liquid. Not a good choice if you want juice, but great if you want to make sauce. I did squeeze all the juice out of them that I could, but ended up with less than two quarts.
While processing them, I immediately saw that the end result of this sauce making session was going to be what I have been hoping for the past couple of years. Instead of getting watery results when putting them through the food mill I got something that looked closer to the consistency of apple sauce. Again, very little juice and a lot of ‘meat’. This all had to do with the type of tomato.
Once it cooked down it was exactly the thickness I have been trying to get. No additional tomato paste needed.
I’m sold. I will never again try to make sauce from slicing/sandwich tomatoes. I guess it is like most things in life. We call all be great at something, but never great at everything.
On top of this, I had no issues with my food mill and the time to cook it down was reduced from hours (2 or 3 or 4) to 1 hour. Everything went smoothly and quickly. Once the sauce was made I placed it into freezer bags and froze it. Saved time by not canning it. Also I think it was cheaper than canning as I didn’t need to buy the lids. It does take up freezer space. Since this was such a small batch, I didn’t mind. However, if I do more in the future I will probably can them up.
Total: 4 and 1/4 quart freezer bag of sauce, 1 quart of juice – frozen in bags.
Tip: While working on my first batch of tomatoes I commented to a friend about how it takes so long because I do not have a very large pot. She commented that these are the times she like to use her pressure canner as a pot. Not only is it large but it also has a thicker bottom that keeps things from burning. She was right. Last night I even fell asleep and didn’t wake up till 3 hours later. There was very little juice left in the pot, but nothing was scolded. As an added benefit, it cleans up easier than my pots. Nothing I dislike more than cooking down tomatoes and it staining our pots.