If you enjoy Southern Grace, Gardening, Preserving, Recipes, Handmade and Homemade, and Primitives then you are going to love this Blog. There will be many useful ideas and upcoming tips that I have learned on my journey that I will share on this site.

Preserving Foods

            Did you know you can freeze Green Tomatoes?

                          Here's how!

Slice tomatoes about 1/4 " thick and single layer them in a freezer zip lock bag.

Place freezer paper in between layers. I have 3 layers in one gallon size freezer bag and that makes 2 future Green Tomato pies.... not to mention Fried Green Tomatoes all year round...YUM!  


How  To Can Tomatoes:

So many people have asked me to please give them the recipe on the sauces that I process and put away so here it is!  This is a step by step process with pictures of how I can my Tomatoes. Why waste the garden veggies when you can can them and enjoy them all year long?  I pre-make Spaghetti, Chili, Crushed Tomatoes and whole Tomatoes...nothing goes to waste. I grow an over abundance of Tomatoes Pesticide free naturally and only with Organic seeds. If you are into healthier eating and don't want all the insecticides and GMO's grow your own and can them...and you will be eating free of pesticides all year. Pour yourself a big glass of cold sweet tea and enjoy!

Step 1.

Make sure that you choose clean ripe Tomatoes for processing.

Step 2.

Bring a big pan of water to a boil and place the whole Tomatoes in the boiling water for about 60 seconds or until the skin starts to split.

 Step 3.

Remove from boiling water and put the Tomatoes in cold water or what I did was put then in my sink that I cleaned really well and run cold water over the Tomatoes.

Step 4.

Peel the skins off of each Tomato, remove the stem and put in a cooking pot. I use gloves because they are still hot even if you place them in cold water or run cold water over them. Some people remove all the seeds but I leave them in the sauce. (Tomato seeds don't bother us) After I have removed the skins and stem I crush all of the Tomatoes in the pot.

Step 5. 

Chop all the other ingredients that goes in the sauce. Here I have Garlic, Green Pepper, Basil, Thyme, Oregano and Jalapeno (yes, Jalapeno and don't tell the kids. It gives a little kick to the sauce and keeps ya healthy!)  All ingredients fresh from the garden too!

Step 6.

Add all ingredients to the sauce.

Step 7.

Cook the sauce and bring to a boil for 5 minutes.

Step 8. 

While I am cooking the sauce I add 1 tablespoon of Lemon Juice and 1 teaspoon of canning Salt to each Quart Mason jar. Make sure your jars are clean and you have new lids. Some people have told me that they use their lids to 4 times...um, you do not want to do that unless you purchase the special lids that you can use over and over. Those are about $15.00. The lids I use are $1.63 at Walmart for 12.  One thing you do not want to do while processing food for storage is #1 be cheap and #2 lazy.. ALWAYS be clean and make sure your cans, lids, rims and utensils. If bacteria grows in the stored food you can get good and sick!!

Step 9.

After the mix has boiled for 5 minutes fill each Quart with the mixture about 1/4 from the rim. You can buy the canning utensil kit with the thongs and funnel at Walmart. It makes life so much easier! 

Step 10.

Place your lids and rims on the jars and firmly screw the rim on the jar. You don't want to have a mess when you open the lid of the pot like I have in the past....takes the fun out of canning! Put the jars in your canning pot so that 1 inch of water is over the top of the jars and bring to a boil. Once the water comes to a  gentle boil you want to leave them in the boiling water with the lid on for 45 minutes.  Now it's time to pour another tall cold glass of sweet tea.....

Step 11.

After 45 minutes turn stove off and remove the jars. Place on a towel to cool. (12 to 24 hours or like I do overnight) Store in a cool dark place.

Step 12.

As I said before nothing goes to waste here. I save the skins and stems for the compost bin. I store them in a freezer bag and put them in the freezer then give it to the worms frozen. It breaks down easier and also keeps them cool.

 You can can your whole tomatoes with the same method too. I highly recommend the Ball Blue Book of canning for beginners. I still use my book and I have been canning for 28 years. The first thing I ever made was Onion Marmalade. I will never forget it because my two oldest daughters were babies...never thought about all those Onions cooking would burn our eyes so badly, lol!  Talk about tears!  Live and learn. It's fun so enjoy!!!


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