Sunday, February 26, 2012

Canning Spaghetti Sauce

I made spaghetti sauce yesterday since I found the large size cans of crushed tomatoes for 90¢ at Big Lots.  I bought 12 cans.  I've made this recipe before and it is wonderful.   I did make a few changes which I'll note below the actual recipe.
Tomato Sauce
120 ounces of roughly pureed tomatoes 
- You can puree fresh from your garden blanched and peeled or use what you've put up in jars or your freezer - no need to thaw -If you are using canned then you want to purchase 56 ounces of pureed and 56 ounces of crushed. They come in 28 ounce cans so that's 2 cans of each.***
18 ounces of tomato paste 
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil 
1 medium onion or 5-6 shallots 
4 dry bay leaves 
2-3 cloves of garlic 
3 tbsp fresh chopped basil or 1 tbsp dried 
2 tsp of sea salt or more to taste as cooking goes along 
18 ounces of water (use your tomato paste jar to measure)

Chop your onion and garlic fine and saute in olive oil just until transparent. Then throw everything into your crockpot. Set to medium or low depending on when you plan on eating. Taste occasionally to see if more salt is needed.

Note: This recipe is for tomato sauce that could be used as the base for spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce or soup base.  I doctored it up for spaghetti sauce.  I only used crushed tomatoes since that's what I bought.  I chopped 2 onions, the one bell pepper I had in the fridge, 1/3 bunch of celery and also a container of cherry tomatoes - I cut them in half.  I sauteed those together using much less olive oil, just enough to keep from sticking.  I used dried sliced garlic as I did not have enough fresh and I added  basil, thyme and oregano near the end so the flavor would not dissipate.  And I did not add any water since I did not add the tomato paste - I forgot to buy any.  I left the lid off the crockpot for the last 2 hours and it thickened nicely without being too dense to can.  I also did not feel the need to add salt.

I got 4 quarts, 1 pint and 1 half pint from this.

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