The finished jars were so pretty, I decided to make them into a watercolor using the Waterlogue iPad app.
Here is how I did it.
1. Peeled the tomatoes by scalding them in boiling water, then placing them in cold water ... the skins slide right off. Cut out cores, bruises, and any other blemishes.
2. For this recipe, in addition to the chopped tomatoes, I added onion, green pepper, a couple of jalapenos, garlic, basil, and some salt.
When my back was turned, as I was working at the other counter chopping tomatoes and stirring the onions and peppers in the pot, Dorothy must have thought that I wouldn't notice her sitting in the empty tomato crate.
3. When tomato mixture is simmering strongly, ladle it into prepared jars and process the jars in a hot water bath.
4. The jars should simmer for at least 30 minutes after the water begins to boil.
5. Remove jars from the canning pot, and let them cool. All that's left at this point is to wash the piles of pots and utensils, clean up the mess on the kitchen counters, and admire the colorful results of a productive day. This fall and winter, these tomatoes will be good for soup, pasta sauce, chili, and whatever else I think of.
For those of you who do canning ... is there any more satisfying sound than the sharp "dink" that you hear as the lid on that last jar pops to indicate that it's sealed?