My end of summer chores involve making different stuff with all of the tomatoes we have. A long time ago (I’m aged) I bought a Victorio Strainer 200. It was so worth what I paid for it and is still working perfectly fine, probably because there aren’t any electronic parts or electricity involved, just crank power. There are many different versions of this useful gadget, all are good. My sister has something she calls a Foley Mill – that one looks like more work, but I’m sure works fine.
First you clean and cut up the tomatoes so that they fit into the hopper. Turn the crank, and push the tomatoes down with the plunger. The tomato juice and pulp will come out of the side and the seeds and skin will come out the end. When we have enough skin and seed in the bowl we’ll put it through the hopper again, in order to squeeze as much pulp out as we can.
After the tomatoes have all gone through the strainer, either put the pulp and sauce into a pot and simmer down to half or put it into a big baking pan and simmer down to half in the oven.
Then the canning begins. You can either put jars into water in a vat on the stove and heat them up that way, or as I do in the dishwasher. I also clean the rings for the jars too. In a much smaller pot, you heat up the lids in water.
- Shake the water off of the jars
- Fill with sauce
- Run knife or spatula around the inside of the jar to remove bubbles from the side
- Wipe rim with a clean cloth
- Place lid on top
- Screw Rim on tight
Place eight(?) jars on a rack in a boiling water bath, lower into the pot, cover with lid and simmer for about 10 minutes. Take the pot lid off for about 5 minutes, raise rack, remove jars and place on a towel to cool. Don’t retighten the rims.
My recommendation for a good primer on canning is the Ball Blue Book. I have other books on preserving and canning that I use and think are great, but for starting out, this is the best hands down. The tools I use for canning are in the picture. This is a new kit that I bought. I had some of the tools already, but the tongs and jar lifter were misplaced, and I never had a lid magnet before so I ordered this one. I’m going to put this away with my other canning things so that it will be all together when I need it. Otherwise family members use the different tools for their needs and they go missing.
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