End of September, last of the tomatoes

Well today finally came. I don’t mean the end of another month just the end of another tomato season. Hurrah at that! I still have more than enough apples and plenty of zucchini to preserve something everyday next week. I really want to get as far as I can this week as we are needing to think about the rest of the root crops.

Carrots and beets are still in the garden, and though they can stay in the ground in some places, my garden is not one of those. We tried that one year and lost most of the crop. It is sort of a precarious dance with removing carrots. If you leave them out for a hard frost they are sweeter, but you better scramble to dig before the snow or extreme fall rains hit.

Last year we were digging potatoes in the mud and we never did get it off some of them. The smallest ones ended up as the seed potatoes for this yeR which was fine as they produced a decent crop, and since we dug a bit earlier, we were able to clean them and we now have three gummy sacks of different sizes. That reminds me they should probably find their way to the basement.

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The pictures above were at the start of my day. I began blanching them at 9:30 am. I had everything blanched and cooling by noon. I should have been taking the skins off as I went, but I was washing jars and doing laundry and figuring out songs for Sunday.

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The top of the two pictures above is the bottom of the salsa pot, and the last is one of each item made today. The total for the day was 20 quarts and one half pint, which was the left over of the salsa. Oh yes and I have enough soup left to take to Brown Bag Bible study lunch tomorrow. The break down went like this: 8 qts of soup, 8 qts of salsa, 2 juice and 2 whole tomatoes.

As I was peeling them today I figured out how many times you handle each tomato when canning. This is my version: 1-pick, 2-place on the table, 3-put in bowl carry to stove, 4-put in kettle, 5-take out of kettle put in pan to cool, 6-peel (now for whole you would go straight to the jar here then 7-to canner and process). For salsa (7-put in kettle, mix up then 8-put in jar, 9-canner to process). For juice or soup 7-put in blender, 8- run through cone strainer to remove seeds. For juice 9- put in jars and 10-process in canner. For soup 9-put in kettle and add salt, sugar, oil or butter and thickening then 10-put in jars and 11-process in canner. Hope that makes you understand the work involved and that if someone who cans shares with you, they are also sharing their time.

Last note. Today I ate the perfect apple grown right in the yard. Yummy!

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