Even though the gardens are mostly gone there is still plenty of time to do some home food preservation. As I was making some Mrs. Wages® Pie Filling this week, I was thinking ahead to the holidays and started making plans for giving some of my home preserved food away.
Giving something you have made to family and friends shows that you care about them and adds your personal touch to the gift.
Here’s a straight-forward question about picking the right tomatoes for fresh-made ketchup from Paula:
I will be trying my hand at making ketchup this year. What type of fresh tomatoes do you suggest?
When canning tomato products such as ketchup I prefer Roma or similar meatier tomatoes – they have less juice and make a thicker product.
No, that headline isn’t advice to over-enthusiastic youngsters when they hit the dance floor – it’s just a little common sense to the home canner who is wondering if they can just add an extra ingredient to their next batch when they’re canning in the kitchen.
The short answer is “no” – the longer answer is “know when it’s time to add your creativity and still keep the food safe for consumption.”
There are many varieties of tomatoes available for us to choose from – heirlooms to the newer hybrid varieties. Over the years, the acidity level of tomatoes has been researched, and data collected resulted in the United States Department of Agriculture issuing a statement in 1976 that certain varieties of tomatoes were considered low acid foods and that they must be processed as low acid foods. Since that time, recommendations are to add acid to all tomato products being processed at home.
Did you know that when you have eaten all of the pickles out of the jar that you can make pickled vegetables from the juice? Cooked cauliflower, carrots, and several other types of vegetables can be marinated in the leftover juice…so you can still have some of the flavor of your labors.