For this article we are assuming you've grown your own tomatoes, however if you don't, contact you're local farmer or go to the farmers market and ask a farmer to box up 20 pounds of organic (be sure to ask) Roma Tomatoes. They will usually give you a special price.
Why do I go through all this trouble to make my own pasta sauce? Isn't there organic pasta sauce I can buy? Why even do it at all? To much work for the money I save? Maybe, yes, maybe. Consider this:
- Unless you grow your own heriloom products even your produce is now rapidly becoming GMO (Genetically Modified=dangerous to eat) products. We refuse to knowingly eat GMO products and/or feed them to our animals.
- Most Pasta sauces, even the organic ones, contain some kind of sweetener. I became a Type II diabetic eating to many carbs and sweets. I recently discovered that a low carb diet can relieve me of the chemical medicines that kept my blood sugars in check. Sugar is an addictive drug that everyone should avoid. Believe me, it's easier said than done. It's a lifestyle change.
- My job is to 'work at home'. This means that if I grow my own food, I should also do something to make it a long term usuable product. Especially when I have no fresh produce for half the year in the climate I am in. It's my job and I work at it.
- You can't always trust some organic/whole/real food markets. Many stores (especially Walmart) have been caught selling 'organic' products that are NOT organic.
This recipe will make 16 pints of pasta/pizza sauce (depending on how much you cook it down:
Chop 7-10 stalks of ORGANIC celery. Place in pan with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon sea salt. Simmer on Medium until soft. Process in blender and pour into big pot.
Chop 10 small (5 large) ORGANIC green or red peppers. I like to let my peppers get red to use for this sauce. Place in a pan with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon sea salt . Simmer on Medium until soft. Process in blender and pour into big pot.
Chop 7 medium ORGANIC onions. Place in a pan with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon sea salt . Simmer on Medium until soft. Process in blender and pour into big pot.
Mince 10 cloves Garlic and 1-2 seeded Jalepeno Peppers. Place in pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Simmer briefly. Soften but do not burn! Pour into your big pot
Add to big pot:
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 heaping tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
3/4 cup chopped parsley
1 tablespoon sea salt
The above section took me about an hour to complete. This is where I take a break for a bit.
Now the work begins. With 15-20 pounds of Roma type, Heriloom, non-gmo tomatoes remove the skins and seed the tomatoes. If you use regular tomatoes you will use twice that amount. I figure 4 times the amount of tomatoes, by volume, as the other ingredients.
How to Remove Skins and Seeds: Heat a pot of water to almost boiling. Have an additional pot of ice water on the side. Drop the tomatoes in the hot water for a mintue or so. Dip out and place in the cold water. Quickly remove the skins and the core. What I do now is cut the tomato in have a squeeze the tomato so that the seeds and the watery portions of the tomato go into my compost bucket. Then throw the meaty part of the tomato into the pot with the other ingredients.
The above section took me about an hour and a half to complete.
NEXT: Stir all together and place in crock-pots (this is my secret to getting something else done and/or resting inbetween). I cook the sauce on low with the lids off for 6-8 hours, stirring occasionally. Use an emersion blender to blend the cooked product before canning. At this stage you could refrigerate and heat the sauce us (careful not to burn at this point) and process the next day.
Clean up from this stage Took about an hour. I also readied my jars and lids (wash and sterilize), and got out the pressure canner.
Now you can process the sauce for winter use. I now use pints but there was a time when I canned 30 quarts at a time in my large pressure canner and made 2-3 batches. NOTE: I am now moving to reusable canning lids
I hope to add pictures to this post later of the finished product!