Wednesday, September 2, 2009


a tomato canner.
that's right;
I can tomatoes.
At least,
I did.
I have 6 lovely quarts
peeled petite diced tomatoes sitting on my counter
plus another one in the fridge that didn't seal.
But here's the thing:
If I'd have bought 7 big cans of petite diced tomatoes
at Walmart
it'd have cost me $8.33 plus tax.
Them there 7 jars
represent 2 hours of labor
(1 1/2 hours of mine & 1/2 hour of Brandon's - thanks, Bud!!)
and that doesn't include the finding and washing of the jars
lids, rings and canner.
Or the picking of the tomatoes.
Also coming into the equation:
it takes 1 hour and 25 minutes
to water bath process a quart of tomatoes in their own juice.
The heat under the canner was on high for over an hour
prior to that
while I was preparing the tomatoes.
Another burner was on high for an hour an a half
so I could have boiling water to blanch the tomatoes
so their skins would slip off easily.
I had to turn the air on in the kitchen
because it got so hot
(and today was a really cool day!)
My mom gave me lots of canning stuff
(thanks, Mom!!!)
so I didn't have to buy jars or bands
but I did have to buy lids
(14 cents per lid
if memory serves me - which - in all fairness, it may not...)
While the part of me that wants desperately
to live a self-sufficient lifestyle
is quite pleased,
the realist in me
(who is equally loud; probably even louder....)
it really isn't worth it;
just buy your stupid canned tomatoes at the store
and be done with it.
Move on.
at least I can still make my own jam...


  1. thats so true! I love fresh garden veggies, but what DO you do with the excess?? hardly worth the trouble, EXCEPT for the fact that when you make your own, the are no extra added harmful ingredients!

  2. yes - I thought of the organic angle, too, and that certainly carries some weight - but still..... my 'available' time is in pretty short supply right now...

    needless to say ~ I'll be bringing tomatoes :-)

  3. :) well, guess it just depends on what you preserve and how long it takes. Picante sauce - that'd be worth it (except you make your own salsa that's 1000 times better)
    It is a bummer though, to know you didn't actually save that much money. But then, you say this every year :D

    I'd say the jam is very well worth it!

  4. No, keep canning. We need people who are able to can, think of the rest of us!

    I canned tomatoes one year. Put six jars up on the shelf. Was terrified of eating them because they didn't have a Walmart label on them. They sat there for over a year before I tossed them out. My MIL told me I would be able to tell on opening them if they had gone bad, feel the seal, smell if they were spoiled, and that if I brought it to a boil for a long time I would be definitively safe. Didn't help.

    Don't stop canning!


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