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Jersey tomatoes are the best, aren’t they? By this point in the summer you have probably had close to your fill of fresh sliced tomatoes on your burgers, salads and sandwiches, as well as countless caprese salads, fresh pico de gallo, and every other way to eat a tasty tomato. You might even be okay with the thought of your tomato plants finishing up over the next few weeks! However, don’t forget those long winter months where you crave the juicy goodness of the garden state’s most prized garden offering! With your last hearty harvest of tomatoes why don’t you give canning and preserving a try so that you can enjoy the taste of your Jersey tomatoes all year long!

Ball® Basil-Garlic Tomato Sauce Recipe:

The name says it all. Combine tomatoes, basil and garlic for a sauce you can serve any time.

PRESERVING METHOD:                   LEVEL OF EASE:

Water-bath Canning                                       Medium

YOU WILL NEED:

  • 20 lb tomatoes (about 60 medium)
  • 1 cup chopped onion (about 1 large)
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup finely minced, fresh basil
  • ¼ tsp Ball® Citric Acid or 1 Tbsp bottled lemon juice per hot jar
  • 7 (16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands

FOR A HALF RECIPE:

  • 10 lb tomatoes (about 30 medium)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion (about 1/2 large)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp finely minced fresh basil
  • ¼ tsp Ball® Citric Acid or 1 Tbsp bottled lemon juice per hot jar
  • 3 (16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands

DIRECTIONS:

  1. PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside.
  2. WASH tomatoes; drain. Remove core and blossom ends. Cut into quarters. Set aside.
  3. SAUTE onion and garlic in olive oil until transparent. Add tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. PUREE tomato mixture in a food processor or blender, working in batches. Strain puree to remove seeds and peel.
  5. COMBINE tomato puree and basil in large saucepot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until volume is reduced by half, stirring to prevent sticking.
  6. ADD ¼ tsp Ball® Citric Acid or 1 Tbsp bottled lemon juice to each hot jar. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center hot lid on jar. Apply band and adjust until fit is fingertip tight.
  7. PROCESS filled jars in a boiling water canner for 35 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check for seal after 24 hours. Lids should not flex up and down when center is pressed.

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September is also the perfect time to pickle! Pickling is a delicious way to spice up your cucumber crop, and you can enjoy them almost right away, or process them so that you can store them for up to a year later! All you need are some mason jars, vinegar, sugar and spices (we recommend Ball® Pickle mixes)! You can also pickle a number of other vegetables like beets, beans, cabbage, eggplant, okra, peppers and more!

 

BALL® BREAD AND BUTTER PICKLES

Sweet, crunchy and full of flavor. Start with fresh cucumbers and Ball® Bread & Butter Pickle Mix and you’re there. It has never been easier to make this traditional favorite.

PRESERVING METHOD:               LEVEL OF EASE:

Water-bath Canning                                  Easy

YOU WILL NEED:

  • For every 2 quarts of pickles:
  • 3 1/2 lbs pickling cucumbers (about 14 small to medium)
  • 2 1/2 cups vinegar (5% acidity)
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup Ball® Bread & Butter Pickle Mix
  • 2 Ball® Quart (32 oz) Fresh Preserving jars with lids and bands

Use Ball’s®  recipe calculator chart to customize the number of jars from 2-13

DIRECTIONS:

Prepare Bread & Butter Pickles

  1. CUT ends off cucumbers. Cut into 1/2 inch slices.
  2. COMBINE vinegar, sugar, and Ball® Bread & Butter Pickle Mix in a medium saucepan. Heat to a boil.
  3. PACK based on ENJOY NOW or FRESH PRESERVE steps below.

ENJOY NOW (Refrigerate up to 3 months):

  1. POUR hot pickling liquid over cucumber slices in a large bowl. Cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
  2. PACK cucumber slices into jars. Ladle pickling liquid over cucumbers. Place lids & bands on jars.
  3. REFRIGERATE pickles. For best flavor, allow pickles to stand in refrigerator for 3 weeks.

-OR-

FRESH PRESERVE (Store up to 1 year):

  1. PREPARE canner, jars, and lids according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  2. PACK slices into hot jars. Ladle hot pickling liquid over slices leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rims. Center lids on jars. Apply bands and adjust to fingertip tight.
  3. PROCESS in boiling water canner for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude*. For best flavor, allow pickles to stand for 4-6 weeks.

 

The most important thing to remember when canning and preserving is to follow a trusted recipe to a “T”. Depending on the acidity level of a food, it has to be preserved through specific methods to make sure it is safe for you to eat later!

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