Photos and recipes by Holly Roberts Walker
Late summer is the best time of year for plum-like tomatoes that are ready for canning; and in many cases, the tomato plants will keep producing until the first frost. In western Kentucky, the 2021 tomato growing season has produced flavorful red, yellow, green, orange, pink, and purple fruits. Now is the time to prepare winter pantries with delicious stewed tomatoes, tomato sauces, and salsa.
A good friend and gardening expert, Holly Roberts Walker, shares two tomato canning recipes to delight the taste buds. If you're interested in a sweet and savory tomato sauce or batch of stewed tomatoes, two recipes will follow for the readers of WKY Community Living.
To prepare tomatoes for roasting, one must core, score, freeze/thaw, and take the skin off. Scoring the tomato makes it easier to remove the skin.
25 lbs. of assorted tomatoes, peeled and cored
6 bell peppers, roughly chopped (combination green and red)
4-6 medium yellow onions, roughly chopped
Worcestershire Sauce, to taste (up to ½ cup)
Liquid Aminos, to taste (up to ¼ cup) can substitute soy sauce
8-10 cloves garlic, minced
4-6 bay leaves
1-2 teaspoon olive oil
⅔ cup brown sugar (packed)
4-6 6 oz. cans tomato paste
Seasoning Blend (see below)
1 -2 T. salt
Combine: tomatoes, bay leaves, Liquid Aminos, worcestershire sauce, 1 -2 T. salt
In a 22 quart roaster pan set to 250 degrees. Roast/stew for 3-5 hours. To each Quart jar add 2 Tablespoons of lemon juice. For a Pint jar add 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice. Can immediately while liquid is hot using water bath method for 40 minutes leaving ½” headspace.
Tomato Sauce Base
Combine: Onions, Peppers, & Garlic
In Dutch oven, place olive oil and set over medium heat. Sauté mixture until onions are cooked through. Add mixture into the roasted tomatoes and cook five additional hours at 200 degrees.
Add: tomato paste (start with 4 cans) Check the consistency and add the brown sugar. Using an emulsion blender, puree the batch thoroughly.
Italian Seasoning Blend (in a bowl)
4 Tablespoons dried oregano
4 Tablespoons dried basil
2 Tablespoons garlic powder
4 Teaspoon dried thyme
4 Teaspoon dried red pepper
To each Quart jar add 4 ½ teaspoons of blend and 2 T. Lemon Juice Pint jar add 2 ¼ teaspoons of blend and a T. Lemon Juice
Fill jars with hot tomatoes leaving a ½” headspace.
Wipe rims and seal.
Water bath for 40 minutes.
To Use: Shake jar to blend before opening.