Canning Tomato Juice & Tomatoes

One of my goals this past summer was to learn how to can tomato juice and tomatoes from my mom. She has been doing it since I can remember, but I never learned how to do it myself. Actually, to be honest, I dont even remember watching her can tomatoes, they were just always there. I remember helping my grandma and mom can pears and peaches, but never tomatoes.

While Michael, Jada & I were living with my parents during part of March and April I had the opportunity to cook once or twice a week. When I made recipes that used tomatoes or tomato juice or sauce I used my mom's homemade stuff and HOLY COW did it taste better. A few of the recipes I made during our stay I have made a ton of times, but using those home canned tomatoes made all of the difference. They made some of my favorite recipes a million times better! That was when I decided that I wanted to learn to can. Eventually I would love to learn how to can everything (such as peaches, pears, applesauce, tomatoes, and whatever else I want) but I thought I would start with tomatoes since they are in a lot of the recipes I love. I know I will need a lot of canning equiptment if I want to do this regularly and on my own in the future, but I figured, hey, I should take advantage of living by my parents as long as I can. I will get my own equipment one day.

Last month I was able to achieve my goal and check off canning tomatoes from my "to-do" list. During one of our weekends up in Syracuse, my mom and I went out early in the morning and picked a box of tomatoes. (Ok lets me honest, I supervised while my mom did. We forgot gloves and after picking up tons of rotting tomatoes I just couldn't do it. I bet out of the 50 + I picked up only 5 were usable in my book. Good thing my mom grew up on a farm and was used to this kind of work. Though she did inform me that they took much better care of their tomatoes and their tomatoes were never in this condition. She said picking on their farm was a MUCH easier and better experience. Better luck next time I guess. Either A, don't forget your gloves, or B, just buy they pre-picked from a farmers market.) Anyways, once we had filled the box, we headed home, combined the box with a bunch of tomatoes from my parents garden, and started the festivities. To my surprise, my dad joined in the fun and helped us juice and can all the tomatoes. I didn't know he knew how to can, but apparently he does. He even knew all the canning vocabulary, which I did not.

I had a wonderful time canning with my parents and now have over 30 jars of tomato juice and whole tomatoes. Yum, Yum! Meals at the Jensen home just got a lot better!

Thanks Mom and Dad for sharing your skills and knowledge with me. I loved canning with you!


Lindsey said...

i'm pretty jealous you got to can tomatoes! and that you have canned tomatoes to eat.

also your photos are awesome, as they should be. i just wish i could post sweet pics on my blog, but hey, i do what i can.

Aubry T Jensen said...

thanks lindsey. too bad it wasnt tomato season when you were here so we could do it together. it was pretty fun. as far as the pictures, thanks:) and i dont know what you are talking about. yall have awesome picture on your blog too!