I know I mentioned before, but every year we plant tomatoes and this year is no different.
I placed an order for the "topsy turvy" tomato planters this year in February with 3 months anticipation since I had read that they worked and used little space. If you don't know about them, you basically put your soil and tomato plants in a bag and they hang upside down so they never hit the ground or go bad.
How did they work? Who knows?!!! After calling the company and being told it takes 6-8 weeks for the items to be shipped and then following up with them at week 9 to be told they were shipping out that day and then following up again at week 11 to be told they were back ordered and would ship out in a couple of weeks, I just cancelled the order!
I have never had so much trouble ordering a product in my life! So.....in the end as you can see in the pictures, we ended up going to Sam's Club and purchasing nesting planters (a total of 6) and placed them around the patio. We then went out and bought different varieties of tomatoes including some heirloom ones which are not only beautiful, but very tasty too!
Well over the last week I had collected a large soup pots worth of tomatoes and spent yesterday morning peeling, pureeing, and then preparing sauce. The end result was D - DOUBLE - DELICIOUS!
After putting them in jars I set up my 23+ year old canner on the patio and started it up. Why do I do it that way instead of on my stove top?? Simple, I have a glass top range and it specifically warns against canning on it as it could overheat given the high temperatures needed for canning and crack the surface. Since I love my range (which I cannot replace anywhere since it is not only an oven but also a refrigerator - no lie!) I try to take care of it as much as possible. I will write about it some other time, but you all will just be amazed!! LOL!
In any case, when DH and I were trying to figure out how I could safely can a couple of years ago, we came across the "fish fryer" at Walmart and had our answer. It works really well and heats quickly so the canning is very effient and the pressure builds up quickly and easily. It also gives me a good excuse to sit on the patio and enjoy the day as well while I wait for the little weight to jiggle.
So in the end, I was able to put up our first 7 pints of sauce (perfect for 2 people) and have a quart left which we had for dinner last night. It really came out well. I added all the usual spices and the dark things you see in the jar is fresh basil from the garden. Can I tell you that stuff just keeps growing and growing! I have been making and eating so much pesto that I think I'm going to turn green LOL! I have put some away for this winter when I know it will be missed.
Anyway, I have been going on and on and I guess it's time to start my day. I'm looking forward to the other tomatoes to ripen so I can start the process all over again! Hope everyone is well!