Friday, March 1, 2013

water bathing your tomato sauce

And so after you have separated the skins and seeds out of your tomato sauce. Put it on the stove in a big pot and add your flavourings. I use onions, garlic and grated zucchini (as I have a glut of them at the moment), also lots of basil. I saute the onions and garlic in some butter for more flavour. I cook this for a while until it is nice and thick. Then I decant it into large jars that I have washed in hot soapy water, rinsed and put into the oven for 20 minutes or so on 150 degrees C to sterilise them. I boil the lids in a saucepan to sterilise them. Make sure you sterilise any other equipment that may come into contact with the sauce like ladles and funnel.
Then put the jars carefully into a largest pot with a cake rack in the bottom so jars aren't sitting straight onto the pan bottom. Fill with hot water. You are trying not to shock your hot jars, so don't add cold water. Bring to the boil gently, can take an hour. Allow to gently boil/simmer for 20 mins. No hard and fast rule here, a friend of mine brings it to the boil and then turns it off and allows them to cool in the pot. I have read you should do it longer in the water and then take them out with special tongues and leave them to cool.
The lids should pop inward as they cool.
When they are cool if the lids haven't popped in then they will not keep. Either redo them, get new lids or decant into plastic containers and freeze or eat!
Here is a picture of mine just put into the bath. These will keep for a year or two, who knows how long our always get eaten before then.
Give it a go!

 Here is some I did recently along with 2 jars of zucchini soup.

I don't know why the first lot looks yellower than the second lot.

Most of my garlic harvest and some brown onions.

some jams and compotes I have made

These are my preserves for selling at the gate.
zucchini and onion soup, Yum!

Some of my white onions, I love to plait them and hang them around the house.

And the zucchini plague continues. But we don't really mind.

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