In addition to loving to cook, I also love to can and freeze produce for use throughout the winter. Below are some of my favorite go-to canning & freezing recipes:
Canned Berks County Salsa
- 14 cups of chopped tomatoes (peeled or unpeeled depending on your preference)
- 3 cups pureed onion
- ½ c. jalapeno peppers (or other hot peppers)
- 1 green pepper- chopped
- 1 yellow pepper – chopped
- 3 tablespoons salt
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1-2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder (optional, if desired)
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 ½ tsp. cumin
- 1 cup tomato paste
- *½ cup vinegar
- *1 small handful of cilantro
1. Cook all ingredients except the vinegar and cilantro for about 15 minutes (until slightly soft but there are still chunks of tomatoes).
2. Blend vinegar and cilantro in the blender and add to the cooked ingredients and cook for a few minutes (until a bit thickened).
3. Put into canning jars and process in a boiling water bath for 15-20 minutes.
- 20 cups peeled chopped plum tomatoes
- 20 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup loosely packed basil, chopped
- 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar (regular balsamic or white wine vinegar will work if they are at least 5% acidity)
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 4 teaspoons ground black pepper
- 2 cups tomato paste
- Wash tomatoes thoroughly in a solution of 10 parts water, 1 part vinegar. Only use blemish-free produce in canning.
- Chop tomatoes and basil, mince garlic. If desired, drain tomatoes. Combine tomato and basil with all other ingredients.
- Bring mixture to a boil, simmer 5 minutes. Follow water bath canning instructions. Makes 5 quarts.
*DISCLAIMER* I have tested this recipe and found that it falls well within safe pH levels. However, since pH levels vary, the USDA recommends using 2 tablespoons of vinegar per quart of tomatoes. I recommend testing the PH of your sauce to make sure it is at 4.5 or below. Use other precautions, such as washing your tomatoes in a vinegar-water solution, using only blemish-free tomatoes and processing for the recommended amount of time.
Water Bath Canning Instructions
- Sterilize jars by washing them in the dishwasher just prior to canning.
- Fill canner with water (approximately half full) and allow water to heat to boiling.
- Place jars at the top of canner (not submerged) to allow steam to warm them. This will prevent jars from breaking when filled with hot liquid.
- Place lids and caps into a separate pan of hot (not quite boiling) water. Keep hot until ready to use.
- Pack hot bruschetta/salsa into hot jars allowing half-inch head space at the top of the jar.
- Wipe tops & threads of jar. Place caps on the jars, screw the jars closed tightly.
- Place jars into canner. Water should be two inches above jars.
- Bring water to a boil. Reduce heat, holding water at a gentle boil. Start timing process after water has reached a boil. *The USDA recommends processing quarts of tomato sauce (bruschetta) for 35 minutes and salsa for 15-20 minutes.
- Remove jars from canner. Set jars upright and allow to cool (24 hours).
- Test to be sure each jar is properly sealed. If lid center is down and will not move, jar is sealed.