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Food Safety: Keeping Food Fresh Ideas relating to canning all types of foods, can also cover freezing for preservation, long term storage, avoiding spoilage and other safety concerns.

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Old 10-12-2005, 10:17 AM
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Need specifics on canning tomatoes

I am getting lost in a sea of internet information on canning tomatoes.

I have about 1/2 a bushel of small Roma tomatoes I'd like to can. My freezer is too small to freeze them. I've got 24 wide mouth pints. My neighbor helped me can some green beans using her pressure canner and it had a dial. It seemed easy, but now I'm flying solo on the tomatoes!

I've borrowed someone else's canner that only has 5, 10, 15 on the dial but it's not a gauge with a needle that moves.

So basically here's my questions:
#1. Do I HAVE to peel the Romas? There are so many and I think it'd be a royal pain. Will I have unfavorable results with the skins on?

#2. I just want to quarter and stuff them in a pint, no water added. What is the proper method for this?

#3. I always have to add lemon juice right? 1 tsp for 1 pint?

I don't want to mess up and get food poisoning, but I'm on my own here!


If someone can give me step by step dummy instructions, I'd appreciate it!!

Last edited by SkiGirl; 10-12-2005 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 10-15-2005, 06:41 AM
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Canning tomatoes

This is from the Ball Blue Book, The Guide to Home Canning and Freezing.

Tomatoes (packed in water)

Raw pack - Wash tomatoes and dip in boiling water for 30 to 60 seconds or until skins split. Dip tomatoes in cold water;slip off skins; and remove cores. Leavewhole or cut in half. Add 2 tablespoons of bottled lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid to each quart jar,or 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice or 1/4 teaspoon citric acid to each pint jar. Pack tomatoes into jars, cover with hot water leaving 1/2" head space. Add 1 teaspoon salt to each quart jar or 1/2 teaspoon to each pint jar, if desired. Remove air bubbles. Adjust caps. Process pints 40 minutes, quarts 45 minutes in boiling water bath.

Check out your local library to see if they have books on canning. The above mentioned book I call my second Bible.
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Old 10-15-2005, 06:58 AM
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I do my tomatoes the simple way but the food experts would probably cringe on it.

Boil up a big pot of water, put tomatoes in, leave sit a short while until you can see the peelings starting to split. Put tomatoes in the sink and cover with cold water. The peelings will come right off.

Cut out the stem part, cut into quarters (for Roma's or 6-8 times for bigger tomatoes), put into a kettle. Bring the tomatoes to a good boil, put into clean jars, wipe off tops, put on lids and rims. As they cool, the seal will set.

If the seal doesn't set, put the tomatoes back in a pan, bring to a boil again. Check to make sure that the jar doesn't have any nicks and use a new lid. Sometimes, if just a bit of tomato gets on the rim of the jar, it won't seal. Or, just put that jar in the refrig and use up in a day or two.

I do not use any lemon juice or anything, but used to put a teas. salt in the bottom of the jar just for flavor but now watching my salt intake so don't even do that anymore.

I know the experts say you have to put them in a water bath, etc., etc., etc., but I am 63 years old, been doing it like this since I got married at 19 because that is the way my mother and mother-in-law did theirs all their life.

No one I know ever got food poisoning from our tomatoes.

Good luck and enjoy your tomatoes this winter!!!
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Old 10-17-2005, 10:36 AM
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Thanks all!

I finally went for it! I did whole Roma tomatoes, raw pack in water. I peeled them because I only saw one sentence on why I should peel them - something to do with bacteria...

The only problem is I never used this weight gauge canner before. So I tried my best to keep the temperature constant, but I'm not sure. It was supposed to giggle 1-4 times/min.

So tell me if this worked - the cans have all seemed to sealed, meaning I press the center and the lid does not pop up or anything. However, when I removed them from the cooled canner and placed them on the counter, there were tons of bubbles fizzing to the top. Almost like you just pour a glass of soda pop. At this point I wasn't sure if the cans actually sealed because of all these bubbles rising. I did poke any air bubbles out with a spatula prior to canning.

Do you think they are safe?
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Old 10-17-2005, 06:58 PM
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Sorry I can't help on this as I said I don't do it that way.

BUT, I have a question if someone could help.

I can get in, post a replay to a thread, but what do I have to do to start a new thread if I have a question that I need help on?

Thanks for any help!!
Monnie :-)
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