Organic Gardening in an Urban Setting

Preserving Your Bountiful Harvest of Fine Organics

   After all your hard work and toil over the summer growing season, the time comes to save your produce. As the average tomato plant can feed a family of four; many of us have more fruit than we can consume while fresh from the vine. One of the easiest things to do with your extras is to make a basic tomato sauce

You will find the detailed pictures of this production in the Photo Gallery

To learn about drying out and preserving your herbs look here

Basic Tomato Preservation

No matter the colour; red, yellow, or pink the process is the same for all basic sauces. Start by washing your firm ripe tomatoes. Cut them into quarters and remove the hard growth where they join on to the vine. Heat the cut tomatoes in a pot till they are warm and soft. If you are afraid that they may be too dry add a small amount of water.

After they are warm but not cooked comes the messy part. Using a simple food mill or if you have a large amount to process, a tomato press; separate the skins and seeds from the pulp. Return your pulp to the pot and cook it down slowly simmering over a low heat and you are done. Pretty simple isn't it.

Jarring your sauce for winter is also very easy. Sterilize your jars by boiling them for about 15 to 20 minutes. Make sure that they are completely covered by water. DO NOT boil the lids or rings and always make sure that you use new rings and lids each year.

Ladle your sauce into your clean jars and apply the rings and lids. They need not be screwed on more than finger tight. Place your filled bottles of sauce into a pot of warm water submerged up to, but not covering, the rings. Bring the pot to a boil and cook your closed jars about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the bottles in the hot water to cool slowly. You will hear the lids snap down as the jars cool. Remove them from the water bath and screw the lids tight. You now have a fine gourmet homemade organic tomato sauce that should keep well till next years harvest.

You may add any type of herb or spice to your sauce in the cooking phase but it is just fine to wait till you put your sauce to use to add them. This also allows you to have a much wider range of sauce flavours without having to cook up too many types at once.

You will find pictures of this production method in the Photo Gallery .

To learn about drying out and preserving your herbs look here