Wednesday, July 23, 2014

putting up tomatoes: crockpot tomato base & canned tomato jam

on any given day this week, if you were to walk into my kitchen, you would find tomatoes.

lots of tomatoes.

tomatoes chopped & tomatoes simmering in pots. tomatoes in crockpots & tomatoes roasting in the oven. tomatoes in the freezer & tomatoes put up for the winter.

it's the season of tomatoes & we are oh so thankful for the bounty!

today i want to share with you two new ways i preserve & put up tomatoes for the winter:

1. crockpot tomato base - a simple way to preserve your tomatoes when you're running short on time is to chop them up, skin & all, & place them in the crockpot. i add frozen or fresh basil for flavor. i put the crockpot on high & allow the tomatoes to simmer for around 12 hours. halfway through the cooking process, i remove the lid to allow the liquid to evaporate. once it's formed into a thick tomato base, i add two cups of tomato base to labeled ziplock bags & place them in the freezer. during the winter months, we add tomatoes to soups, chills, crockpot meals & more. this is the perfect base for adding to almost any meal. 

2. tomato jam - tomato jam is a lengthy process, but your home is sure to smell amazing! to make tomato jam, i followed this recipe. for extra flavor, as recommended by a friend, i added a hint of smoked paprika. it is delicious paired with bread & cream cheese!

happy tomato season!

- natalie

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