Is this approved recipie really safe?

Han123(5a)August 19, 2012


Being new to canning I have had so many questions, and have found this website a great reference source, and been searching the pages for weeks now, thanks to everyone who posts info.

This is my first question, so appologies if its not quite right or silly.

I make sure I use "approved" recipies. But after making the two below I am a little unsure.

1. Ellie Topps. Small batch preserving

Basic Multi-Use Tomato Sauce.

10 plum tomatoes

10 Large round tomatoes

4 garlic cloves

2 cellary sticks

2 Medium carrots

1 Large onion

1 large zuchinni

1 large sweet green pepper

1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes

1/3 cup red wine

1/2 cup red wine vinegar (mine was 6% acestic acid)

2 bay leaves

1 tsp salt

1 tsp oregano & basil

1 tsp sugar

1/4 tso cinnamon and pepper

1/4 parsley

I have follow the insructions exactly, but there seems to be so much vegitables (which raise the pH) and little tomatoes. Should /Could I add some more tomatoes?

P.s. I have now been cooking it for 8 hours because it was SO watery and runny.

2. Bernardin Web Site Tomato Paste

32 cups tomatoes

1-1/2 cups chopper red peppers

2 bay leaves

1 tsp salt

1 garlic clove

tomatoes and peppers cooked for 1 hour then through food mill. Garlic and basil added cooked down. Basil and garlic clove removed. Then can.

Again I followed this recipe exaclty, only after I caned did I realise there was no mention of lemon juice or citric acid.

Do you think I should discard the jars. They were cooked in the early hours and have only just cooled. (whish I had read the earlier post of how no one makes tomatoe paste first - it took about 12 hours and still not paste!)

Advice very much apreciated.


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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Without looking up the recipe I'll assume you have typed it correctly and measured correctly. If so then Ellie Topp's recipes are all tested and should be made according to the directions as they are written. But it is a sauce, not a paste, and a relatively thin sauce at that.

Still the only liquid is the red wine and the wine vinegar so if it is still too soupy after 8 hours of cooking and the lid is off and the heat set properly then it is because of the extra juicy tomatoes you used and that is something the recipe can't control for. It just means more cooking down.

No you should NOT add more tomatoes although I suppose you could add a can of commercial tomato paste to thicken it if you wish since it will contain citric acid and won't negatively affect the pH. For future reference you can drain the large tomatoes first to reduce the liquid, but the recipe is fine and safe as written. I don't recall the processing directions off hand.

The Bernardin recipe has since added lemon juice to the recipe when it was published in the Ball Complete Book (1 1/2 tsp per 1/2 pint jar) but if they were processed for the full 45 mins. I would still consider them safe since the recipe stood as is without the lemon juice for decades. JMO Or you can open add it and reprocess. Or you can freeze them. It's your choice.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 6:34PM
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Thanks for the info Dave.

Maybe I should contact Bernardin, as I got that recipie off their website yeasterday with no lemon juice.

Thanks again.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 6:47PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

If you got it off their website, you're fine. A tomato paste presents less risk because due to the long cooking and evaporation there's less water activity in the final product. Water has a pH in the neighborhood of 7, so as water evaporates out the acidity goes up and the pH goes down, resulting in a safer product.

Typically recipes from tested sources like Bernardin allow quite a bit of leeway to account for typical variations among home processors. They know it's not the same as a commercial product.

Personally I wouldn't worry about it, but I applaud your caution and desire to be safe in your processing.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 11:15PM
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