The Last Pickin’

Harvesting tomatoes is over! Tomato Sauce, here we come …

We had a freeze here and that has put an end to our garden’s production. I must admit, I am not unhappy about it–maybe even a little glad?

Please do not get me wrong. I have been so thankful for all the produce. I am just ready for a break! After all, we were so blessed, we even bought a third freezer. Even it is now full! I could give you a complete inventory of the freezers, but, I think it would be a bit overwhelming! It is amazing how much food it takes to keep our family going!

The tomatoes pictured are just a fraction of the ones we harvested. I had already given one bucket away! We have harvested 8-10 times getting about four, 5-gallon buckets full each time!

What, you might ask, have I done with all these tomatoes? Well, I have made tomato sauce, chopped tomatoes, dehydrated tomatoes, and of course, enjoyed eating them fresh. I do not plan to buy any tomato products this year!

It is very easy to make your own tomato sauce from fresh tomatoes. I realize it is late in the year, but if any of you have gardens that are still producing you might try it.

Tomato Sauce From Fresh Tomatoes

First, wash the your tomatoes cutting out any bad spots.

Then, place the tomatoes in the your blender.

Next, blend tomatoes coarsely. I like to have a chunky sauce.
After each batch is blended, pour the liquid into a large boiler. I use either a 5 or a 10 gallon pot, or sometimes both! I prefer to process in large batches to save time.
Bring the sauce to a boil on the stovetop (uncovered) and allow it to boil until the desired thickness is obtained. I usually boil about 1/3 of the water off.
Turn off the heat and allow to cool. At this point, I usually cover the pot as it takes my large batches overnight to cool.
When cool, place the sauce in freezer containers and freeze. I use gallon sized freezer bags.
To use, thaw sauce, place in boiler and add Italian spices to taste.

As you can see, I have plenty help in the kitchen!

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