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A taste of the sweet life

Canning Garden Fresh Tomatoes in the South of France

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Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes galore! And they are not yet finished, so we need to get started...preserving the harvest for the winter and beyond, here in the Minervois.

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Several methods can be used, depending on what results you want: whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato puree, tomato and green chiles, or even a nice spicy salsa!

harvest-plum-tomFor a whole tomato preserve, heat a large pot of water. In the meantime, slice a cross in the bottom of your plum tomates, as this variety holds up best canned whole.  Drop them into the hot water long enough to see the skin begin to lossen.  Plunge into a cold bath to stop the cooking, then remove the skins and place into a heavy bottom pot.  Heat to boiling, then fill sterilized jars to 1 inch from top, seal and process traditionally.

Canning tomato sauce requires a few other garden gifts. Onions, garlic, basil, parsley and even hot peppers offer great flavored winter comfort.  Cut all ingredients you want in large, heavy pot not worrying too much about removing skins or cut size.  Cook down all your vegetables and run through a food mill, then put the sauce back into a clean pan, season to taste and bring to a boil.  Process for canning in sterilized jars.

HAPPY CANNING - and happy winter comfort tomatoes!

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