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Enjoying the fruits of canning

May 9, 2012

I finally popped open a jar of my homemade, home-canned spaghetti sauce and I was thrilled at how fresh and delicious it tasted.  I already knew I was a canning convert for life, but this has definitely solidified that sentiment.  The spaghetti sauce was one of the products I canned out of about a hundred pounds of tomatoes I bought at a u-pick farm several weeks ago.  It was my first try at it, and I only roughly followed a compilation of several recipes I had read, so I was nervous that it might not turn out very edible.  But I think I underestimated not only myself, but also the art of canning.

First, I cooked up some ground beef and then deglazed the pan with some cheap merlot.

Then, I added some fresh basil from my window-side herb garden.

I poured in two quarts of my homemade spaghetti sauce and simmered it down until it had thickened a little bit.

All in all, it was delicious.  It was so much better than store-bought sauce, and the total convenience of being able to can up a large batch for later use was awesome.  This sauce was pretty simple–about thirty pounds of tomatoes, peeled and diced, two green peppers, one onion, a heavy handed amount of sea salt and pepper, and a whole garlic, minced.  After reducing and cooking it on the stove for about an hour and a half, it canned into about seven quarts.

But now that I’ve had a chance to try my sauce, I will say there are a few modifications I will make for my next round of spaghetti sauce canning.  First, I need to start the sauce much earlier in the day before canning it so that I can let it cook down and thicken more.  I didn’t add any water to the tomatoes when I made the sauce, but their own natural juices made the spaghetti sauce pretty thin.  Second, I only added my “typical” amount of spices if I were throwing together spaghetti sauce fresh on the stove, but I think I could have added more.  The merging of flavors that happens in the whole canning process is conducive to being heavy handed, I think.  Or maybe that’s just my taste buds.

Lastly, I’m going to have to can more than seven quarts at a time, clearly.

From → canning, Food

  1. Looks so delicious! I know how wonderful home-canned sauce tastes – because I make it every year too! The other tomato based home canned product my family loves is salsa. I make it super-hot for the boys, medium for Mr. Picky-Eater and I, and very mild for my daughter . We like restaurant style salsa and it comes out just right when canning it. Nice job!!

    • Definitely hear you on the salsa! I made about six pints of that when I made the spaghetti sauce but now I am wishing I had made more. My husband had been tearing through it. :). I am totally in love with how delicious everything is when you can it yourself.

  2. I love the healthy aspect of making my own spaghetti sauce! I can pronounce all of the ingredients… IF I had a label!

  3. That’s a very nice light looking sauce. Lovely photography too

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