10:10:00 AM
For the last few years I have not seen a tomato paste recipe that has been actually tested safely for water bath or pressure canning. This morning Deb, a follower on FB, posted a document from the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension a recipe for this long awaited use of tomatoes. 

It's a water bath recipe and very simple to make. I wanted to share it on here so that it would be in writing for my followers to have available long term. Thanks again Deb! 

Tomato Paste

8 quarts peeled, cored chopped tomatoes (about 4 dozen large)  
1 1⁄2 cups chopped sweet red peppers (about 3)
2 bay leaves 
1 teaspoon salt 
1 clove garlic (optional)

Preparation: Prepare 8-9 half pint or 4 oz jars only, lids, and rings. Sterilize the jars and keep them in the hot water till its time for processing. Make sure to fill your water bath canner and get the water to a simmer.  Prepare tomatoes by removing seeds and skins. 
Cooking: In a large stainless steel pot, roaster, or crock pot combine first four ingredients and cook slowly 1 hour. Press through a fine sieve. Add garlic clove, if desired. Continue cooking slowly until thick enough to round up on a spoon, about 2 1⁄2 hours. Stir frequently to prevent sticking. Remove garlic clove and bay leaves.

Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place your hot jars and using your funnel, ladle to fill to 1/4" headspace.  Remove air bubbles and refill to the proper headspace with the mixture if necessary. Taking a clean papertowel wet it with warm water and wipe the rims of the jars removing any food particles that would interfere with a good seal. Using your magic wand extract the lids from the hot water and place them on the now cleaned rims. Add your rings to the tops of each of the jars and turn to seal just "finger tight". 

Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 45 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.

Sealing: Some time in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal.

Labeling: Make sure to label your jars after they have cooled with the name of the recipe and the date canned. If you want to use the shrink labels in the picture you can order them Here! 

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