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Tomato sauce help.

COUNTRYSIDE: A couple of issues ago a lady wrote in stating her tomato sauce turned bitter while cooking it down. I just finished experimenting with a different method of making sauce that might help her, or anyone else. I used different types of tomatoes- regular, Roma, and even little cocktail (cherry) tomatoes.

After washing them, I cut out the stems, the Roma tomatoes I also slit starting at the stem side 3/4 of the way to the tip, twice, in the form of a "plus" sign. Then I set them upside down in a greased 9" x 13" pan. I place them in an oven set to 400[degrees]F. It took an hour before the water baked out of the tomatoes. After baking, using a slotted spoon, I scooped them out of the pan and set them in a colander to drain. I lightly stirred them a little to get the water out, and then ran them through a food mill. The result is a thick sauce, no other cooking down needed. I went on to add my spices, a little oil, some sugar plus some other vegetables like onion and zucchini that I also had baked in the oven separately.

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Then came the test. I had my wife and daughters try it and they liked it. Once I get more tomatoes from the garden, I plan to bake an oven full of them and can the sauce. Since I like to put zucchini in the sauce, I will can them at 10 pounds pressure for about 25 minutes. I expect that the sauce will enhance its flavor while sitting on the shelf marinating with the spices. I'm looking forward to tasting it later in the winter.

On another note, both I and my wife enjoy your magazine. My wife was intrigued with oven canning and went wild using up a lot of our quart jars. I had to go buy more so I could can my tomatoes. To me oven canning makes more sense than some of the other methods for long-term storage of dry goods. I have seen people use five-gallon pails to store food, but once you open it, you have a lot to use up. A quart jar opened one at a time seems to make more sense to me.--Daniel Strauss, Lockport, New York
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Author:Strauss, Daniel
Publication:Countryside & Small Stock Journal
Date:Nov 1, 2011
Words:393
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