- Approx 25 lbs ripe tomatoes (half-bushel, aka one of these boxes in the photo)
- 3 cups celery, diced
- 6 cups onion, diced
- 3 cups fresh parsley
- Black pepper
- Bay leaves (optional)
- Salt (optional)
- 16 or so pint Mason jars with rings and snap lids
- 1/2 teaspoon citric acid PER JAR
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar PER JAR (optional)
Directions for canning:
- Wash your jars in hot soapy water and rinse well.
- Wash your tomatoes well; chop them in quarters and throw the cores into your compost bucket.
- Place tomatoes, celery, onion, and parsley in a large pot. You could also throw in a handful of bay leaves. I don't think I did, but I might have.
- Cook gently, uncovered, until tender, stirring as needed.
- Once it is very well cooked, press through a food strainer or sieve. I used my food mill. The first insert I used had too-large holes so the tomato seeds went right through. I had to go with the finer mesh insert, which worked fine.
- Put soup back in large pot and heat to the boil again. Add salt to taste.
- Place 1/2 teaspoon citric acid in each jar. Add equivalent amount of sugar if you are concerned about tartness.
- Ladle hot soup into pint jars, leaving about 1 inch headspace.
- As usual, "bubble" each jar with a skewer or chopstick to release any trapped air. Wipe each rim with a clean damp paper towel. Place a heated snap lid down and screw the ring on finger tip tight.
- Put the filled jars into your water bath canner. Make sure there is at least an inch of water above the top of your jars. Don't start your timer until the water is boiling. Put the pot lid on and boil pints for 45 minutes.
Now the story behind the story: I only had my water bath canner to use as a big pot and didn't have my pressure canner. So I had to cook all the ingredients in the big pot, then transfer it to a series of smaller pots after straining, wash the canner, fill it with water, then heat it, then heat the soup back up... Probably that's why I have few pictures of the process. It was, frankly, a gong show.
The soup turned out delicious though. I stashed the jars away in the pantry in early September, thinking that they would last through at least some of the winter. As of today, I think there is one maaaaybe two jars left. The boy loves it.
Next year, I'm going to try this recipe: https://commonsensehome.com/home-canned-tomato-soup/ It has very similar ingredients, but it uses Ultra gel to thicken it like concentrate. Might be gross? Reviews are good; worth a try!