My lovely mother will be one year older tomorrow, but we decided to celebrate early with a weekend jam packed with canning experiments!! (see what I did there? hehehe)
Growing up Italian, I became (spoiled) accustomed to fresh tomato sauce at an early age. Growing up in the North East poses a few issues seeing as the average grocery store tomato selection leaves a lot to be desired. My family solves this problem every August by bottling up all the summer goodies we can, so that we have enough for the whole year.
We have not once run out.
That's a lot of tomatoes.
Seriously, it takes forever.
This year was different! We decided to forego the never ending back ache that is washing bushel after bushel of tomatoes in kiddie pools for something new. I mean, we still did two bushels of tomatoes, we're not totally throwing away tradition - but we decided to keep it small this year so that we could attempt some brand new totally exciting recipes!
Added to the roster this year was the following:
Roasted garlic and onion salsa
Mango Peach and Jalapeno salsa
Pickled Cherry Peppers
Pickled Carrot Spears
Jalapenos packed in olive oil
Peach Jalapeno Jam
Tomato Basil Jelly*
*this last one bombed - the jelly failed to gel so we were left with sugary tomato juice in a jar. Not sure what to do with that...
We only made a couple jars of each so I'm sure we'll have run out in just a few months, but I'm glad we bucked tradition a bit and learned some new things. I cannot wait for the carrot spears to be fully pickled. I plan on throwing a brunch for their unveiling so I have a good excuse to make bloody Mary's by the pitcher!
Definitely not a bad way to spend a day in Jersey :-)