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Canning tomatoes: three methods

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Canning tomatoes: three methods
Wadena Minnesota 314 S. Jefferson 56482

Tomatoes must be canned carefully to avoid spoilage and food poisoning. Some tomato varieties, even high-acid varieties, produce lower-acid fruits under some conditions. Therefore, always add bottled lemon juice or citric acid to avoid the risk of botulism.

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• Control spoilage by heat processing filled jars in a boiling water canner or a pressure canner. Researchers at Pennsylvania State University have recalculated processing times. They differ from recommendations prior to 1990.

• Select only disease-free, vine-ripened firm tomatoes. Do not can overripe, damaged or frosted tomatoes, or ones from dead vines. They're lower in acid. Freeze them.

• Pretreat new lids in a saucepan of simmering water, or follow manufacturer's instructions.

Three packing methods

Crushed tomatoes by hot pack method:

• Peel, remove cores and quarter them.

• Heat rapidly in a large kettle and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Crush with wooden spoon.

• Add two tablespoons bottled lemon juice to each clean quart canning jar, then fill with hot tomatoes.

• Add one teaspoon canning salt if desired.

• Seal with two-piece canning lids; process quarts 50 minutes in a boiling water bath canner.

• If you use a dial gauge pressure canner, process for 20 minutes at 6 pounds pressure, or 15 minutes at 11 pounds pressure.

• With a weighted gauge canner, process 20 minutes at 10 pounds pressure, or 15 minutes at 15 pounds pressure.

Whole or halved raw tomatoes packed in water:

• Add two tablespoons bottled lemon juice to each clean quart and fill with raw whole or halved tomatoes.

• Cover tomatoes in jar with hot water, and wipe off jar lip with damp paper towel.

• Adjust pretreated lids and screw ring onto jar.

• Process quarts 50 minutes in a boiling water bath.

• If you use a dial-gauge pressure canner, process for 15 minutes at 6 pounds pressure or 10 minutes at 11 pounds pressure.

• With weighted gauge canner, process 15 minutes at 10 pounds pressure or 10 minutes at 15 pounds pressure.

Raw whole or halved tomatoes packed in juice:

(Tomatoes packed in juice need a much longer processing time to prevent spoilage.)

• To each quart add two tablespoons lemon juice and one teaspoon salt.

• Fill with peeled raw tomatoes.

• Press to make enough juice to cover, or add previously strained hot juice.

• Wipe off jar lip with damp paper towel.

• Adjust pretreated lids and screw rings onto jars.

• Process for 90 minutes in boiling water bath canner.

• In a dial gauge canner, process 40 minutes at 6 pounds pressure, or 25 minutes at 11 pounds.

• In a weighted gauge canner, process 40 minutes at 10 pounds pressure, or 25 minutes at 15 pounds pressure.

For more information on home food preservation, call 1-800-854-1678, hours: 9-12, 1-4 p.m. or www.umn.edu/distribution/nutrition

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