Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Tomato Canning, Before and After, and More Canning

I got the call last Friday morning at 7am:  a half-bushel of seconds tomatoes was waiting for me at market. Thank God I finished Genevieve's school shopping Thursday and picked the beans several blocks away and in my own back yard.  Thank God I sorted the box of hand-me-downs and got caught up with the laundry.

The big kids helped me haul the tomatoes home from market (how I will manage now that they are back in school I do not know).  Ben helped with clear-the-deck chores because he wanted to be out with his lemonade stand in the afternoon.  Genevieve opted to play until lunchtime, and help with the tomatoes after lunch.

Once I got the market things put away, the bread baked, and the dishes washed, the actual canning could begin.  Genevieve peeled all the tomatoes, I stuffed the jars, and then I spent the afternoon running them through the canner.  Now I have 17 quarts of whole tomatoes, sealed and cooling.  And then I got a text from a friend on Saturday with a bunch of peppers, so I made pimentos.  And finally, on Sunday, my in-laws dropped off 10 pounds of Roma tomatoes that someone at their church wanted to get rid of.  So yesterday, I made and canned pizza sauce.

This is all going on with camping preparation and the kids starting school, with Genevieve's middle school location and schedule throwing a wrench in the works.

I love this home-canned food, I love preserving food, but you guys:  my life feels a little impossible right now.  I would ditch the camping if we hadn't already paid for it, and I want to hang with dear friends.

My children are happy which is a big consolation and one of these days, mama's going to be happy, too, when she gets a tidy, peaceful house to herself with no looming projects.  One of these years, maybe. . .


Jenny said...

I'm exhausted just reading this. It is amazing how God gives us what we need to make it through the busy times. What a delight it is to have all that food preserved. Hope you can rest when you go camping.

Ace and Waleena...Two people, actually said...

I have always wondered what sort of peppers you can to make pimentos and if you put them in a brine or what? How did you do this? Pimentos in the jar are so expensive...I would love to know the secret.

My daughter has an organic farm and my husband and I canned all the tomatoes (50 qts!), green beans, pickles and blackberries we could in 4 days. It almost killed me!b :S

Alica said...

I feel your pain!! Not too long ago, I was in your shoes with kids' schedules on top of all the garden/canning work, and now the house is empty. It will get better...or at least it will change...but when you're in the midst of it, it sure can be stressful.

Margo said...

Ace and Waleena, I should have linked to my pimento recipe. Here it is:

Your 4-day marathon would have killed me for sure :)

Becky said...

I am right there with you. Put up half a bushel of tomatoes this past weekend, a few rounds of pickled okra, pickled eggplant, some figs a neighbor shared....and work is insane, there's a parent's meeting every night this week for my daughter's school activities, I'm trying to gear up for this year's after school cooking classes and I just accepted a new part time editorship for a local publication on top of everything else. There is just not enough hours in the day or enough room on my dining room table for it all.

We're really going to enjoy those tomatoes this winter. That's what pushes me through.

e said...

Like Becky said, 'We're really going to enjoy those tomatoes this winter.' That's the trade off, but the effort in summer and fall is staggering. Good for you for being super woman, but do take care of yourself.

(Also, I was away for much of August and haven't caught up on blog reading. Sorry for the lack of commenting!)

Lana said...

That tidy, quiet house comes way too fast and then you would give anything to have them all home again. It's been almost 4 years since we had all our kids here at once.

Eloise (thisissixty.blog) said...

I've never canned tomatoes but I freeze loads of them ready to pop into casseroles and various other dishes. I've also used them to make chutney.


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