Sunday, March 17, 2013

Fresh Tomato Ketchup How To


Process - How to Make Ketchup (or Catsup) from Fresh Tomatoes

 - Selecting the tomatoes

Quality tomatoes!  
Beefsteak
Better Boy
Roma
Rutgers




The Best Tomatoes to Grow for Canning thumbnail








NO MUSHY BRUISED or ROTTEN TOMATOES


 - Removing the tomato skins

Here's a trick you may not know: put the tomatoes, a few at a time in a large pot of boiling water for no more than 1 minute (30 - 45 seconds is usually enough)
then....

Plunge them into a waiting bowl of ice water.

This makes the skins slide right off of the tomatoes!  If you leave the skins in, they become tough and chewy in the sauce, not very pleasant.

 -  Removing seeds and water

After you have peeled the skins off the tomatoes, cut the tomatoes in half.  Now we need to remove the seeds and excess water.

 - Prepare the peppers and onion

Remove seeds from peppers and slice into strips. Peel and quarter onions. 

 - Squeeze of the seeds and water

Just like it sounds: wash your hands then squeeze each tomato and use your finger or a spoon to scoop and shake out most of the seeds.  You don't need to get fanatical about it; removing just most will do.



 - Drain the tomatoes

Toss the squeezed (Squozen? :) tomatoes into a colander or drainer, while you work on others. This helps more of the water to drain off.  You may want to save the liquid: if you then pass it through a sieve, screen or cheesecloth, you have fresh tomato juice; great to drink cold or use in cooking!

Seasonings

Some of the seasonings will straight into the pot with the tomatoes, the rest will go into a spice bag you make from a piece of cheesecloth. Put the tomatoes in a large pot to start simmering.
Into the pot of simmering tomatoes, put:
1 cup chopped onions 1 teaspoon salt (optional - I don't put any in!)
1 cloves of garlic, minced1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper1 cup sugar (white or brown)
 
Optional variations:
add 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
and/or add 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Onto a piece of cheesecloth (about 12 inches square) put 3 tablespoons celery seed.  Tie the corners of the cloth together to make a little bag (you can use a plastic twist tie - I use one from a oven browning bag) and put the bag into a small sauce pot with
  • 3 cups of 5% apple cider vinegar. 
Let it simmer for 30 minutes, while the tomatoes cook (you may need to add more vinegar, so you finish with 3 cups of liquid)

 - Bring the tomatoes to a gentle simmer

Cook the tomatoes for about 20 - 30 minutes over medium heat to make them mushy enough to go through your food mill or sieve.

 - Removing the seeds and skins

Run the cook tomato mixture through the food mill or sieve. Discard the seeds and skins that remain in the sieve..


 - Add the seasoned vinegar and cook down to thicken the mix

Now it's time to add the seasoned vinegar from step  (minus the cheesecloth bag, which you may now discard), and cook down the mixture to thicken it.  You can do it on the stove over low - medium heat, stirring frequently, as shown at right.. OR....
.. put it into a crockpot and let it cook down by itself.  this method is much easier!  I find it takes about 12 hours, but each crockpot may vary.  You want it to get as thick as you like your ketchup, remembering that it will also thicken a little bit after you cool it. The photo doesn't show it, but I cover with a splatter screen or the lid on loosely (so the steam can escape)

 - Get the jars and lids sanitizing

The dishwasher is fine for the jars; especially if it has a "sanitize" cycle.  I get that going about 30 minutes before I figure the ketchup has cooked down enough (yes, that's a bit vague!)
Be sure to let it go through the rinse cycle to get rid of any soap!  It's also a good time to start heating up the water in the canner and the small pan of water to boil the lids.
Lids:  Put the very hot (but not quite boiling; around 180 F, steaming water is fine)
water for at least several minutes.
Note: everything gets sanitized in the water bath (step 12), so this just helps to ensure there is no spoilage later!)

 - Fill the jars with the ketchup and put the lid and rings on

Fill them to within ¼-inch of the top, seat the lid and hand-tighten the ring around them.  
Be sure the contact surfaces (top of the jar and underside of the ring) are clean to get a good seal!


S - Process (boil) the jars in the canner

Put them in the canner and keep them covered with at least 1 inch of water. Keep the water boiling. Process the jars in a boiling-water bath for 35 minutes for pints and 40 minutes for quarts. Remember to adjust the time if you are at a different altitude other than sea level! 
If you have a pressure canner, be sure to follow their directions.
If you have a pressure canner, use it and process the sauce for 30 minutes for pint jars and 35 minutes for quarts, at a pressure of 10 to 11 pounds. I prefer a pressure canner or a larger 33 quarter water bath canner, shown at right - both are much deeper, so there is no mess, no boilovers, and allows you to cover the tallest jars with several inches of water to ensure safety! To order one, click on Canning supplies and select the canner that is right for your stove (regular or flat bottomed for glass or ceramic stoves)

 - Done

Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or  bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight)  You can then remove the rings if you like, but if you leave them on, at least loosen them quite a bit, so they don't rust in place due to trapped moisture. Once the jars are cool, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sucked down. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. If you put the jar in the refrigerator right away, you can still use it. Some people replace the lid and reprocess the jar, then that's a bit iffy. If you heat the contents back up, re-jar them (with a new lid) and the full time in the canner, it's usually ok.













*12 lbs ripe tomatoes
*1 lbs onions
*1/2 lb sweet red peppers
*1/2 lb sweet green peppers
*4.5 cups vinegar (5 percent)
*.5 cups sugar/ Stevia, / Splenda/ OR OMIT
1/8 cup canning or pickling salt *OPTIONAL* not required
Cheesecloth 

Spices (version 1)
1  tablespoon  dry mustard
1/2  tablespoon  ground red pepper
1/2 teaspoon whole allspice
1/2  tablespoon  whole cloves
1 stick cinnamon (3 inches long)
  • Spices (version 2)
    • 1  tablespoon  dry mustard
    • 1/2  tablespoon  ground red pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
    • 1/2  tablespoon  ground cloves
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Equipment

*1 Vitamix  or blender -  
     ~If you use a Vitamix ~ Whole tomato goes into Vitamix.
   ~ Food Mill or Sieve ~if need.

*1 crock pot - (NOT NEEDED IF YOU USE VITAMIX ~ You can make it without one, but that means you keep stirring and watch it 100%. WHY I purchased my Vitamix.
*1 Pressure Cooker (Water bath canner ) (a huge pot to sanitize the jars after filling)
 
  Note: 
~Tomatoes are on the border between the high-acid fruits that can be preserved in a boiling-water bath and the low-acid fruits, vegetables  and meats that need pressure canning.  I have a pressure canner, so I pressure cook my tomato product for less spoilage, BUT water bath may work.

~Food mill or sieve - Not required but it makes a nice, fast polishing step to remove any seeds and hard bits.  Plus, you can use it to make applesauce, seedless jam and more.I highly recommend the Foley Food Mill -You can use an ordinary sieve, but it  will take much longer.

Pint or half-pint canning jars (Ball or Kerr jars can be found at and local "big box" stores - per dozen jars including the lids and rings). 

Lids - thin, flat, round metal lids with a gum binder that seals them against the top of the jar.  They may only be used once.

Rings - metal bands that secure the lids to the jars.  They may be reused many times.

Jar grabber (to pick up the hot jars) 

Lid lifter (has a magnet to pick the lids out of the boiling water where you sanitize them. ($2 at mall kitchen stores and local "big box" stores, or online.)
Ball Bubble FREER Spatula, Jar Lifter, Jar Funnel and Lid Wand.


1 large pot.

Large spoons and ladles

Jar funnel (
$3-Grocery stores, like Publix, Kroger and Safeway and local "big box" stores; sometimes even hardware stores)

 

If you have a pressure canner, be sure to follow their directions.
If you have a pressure canner, use it and process the sauce for 30 minutes for pint jars and 35 minutes for quarts, at a pressure of 10 to 11 pounds. I prefer a pressure canner or a larger 33 quarter water bath canner, shown at right - both are much deeper, so there is no mess, no boilovers, and allows you to cover the tallest jars with several inches of water to ensure safety! To order one, click on Canning supplies and select the canner that is right for your stove (regular or flat bottomed for glass or ceramic stoves)

 -


 http://www.pickyourown.org/ketchup.htm

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