Thick and Rich Tomato Paste
This tomato paste recipe uses a lot of ripe tomatoes and produces a thick, rich paste. Roma tomatoes give the paste a wonderful flavor, but you can use any variety of tomato that you want.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 4 to 5 hours
Processing time: 30 minutes
Yield: 5 pints
15 pounds ripe tomatoes
4 bell peppers (2 red and 2 green)
3 medium onions
3 to 5 cloves of garlic
Remove the stems and cores from the tomatoes.
Remove the stems and seeds from the bell peppers and chop them.
Peel and chop the onions.
Chop the carrots and garlic cloves.
Process the tomatoes, peppers, onions, carrots, and garlic in small batches in a food processor fitted with a metal blade until the food is smooth.
Press the food through a mesh strainer or a sieve to remove any pulp and seeds.
Place the tomato puree in an 8-quart pot and bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
Gently boil the puree, uncovered, about 4 to 5 hours; stir the mixture occasionally, and then more often while it thickens.
Partially cover the pot; reduce the heat while the puree thickens. The paste is done if a generous spoonful of puree stays in a mound on the spoon. If it runs off the spoon, cook it longer and repeat the test.
Prepare your canning jars and two-piece caps (lids and screw bands) according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Keep the jars and lids hot.
Ladle the hot puree into the prepared jars, leaving headspace of 1/4 inch.
Release any air bubbles with a nonreactive tool.
Wipe the jar rims.
Seal the jars with the two-piece caps, hand-tightening the bands.
Remove the hot jars from the kettle with a jar lifter.
Place them on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels, away from drafts.
After the jars cool completely, test the seals.
If you find jars that haven’t sealed, refrigerate them and use them within two weeks.