You say to-may-to…

I was so excited to get up early on Saturday and go to my in-laws and make tomato puree! I know, excited to get up early on Saturday?

A year ago, we were preparing for our trip to Italy. My father-in-law is from there, and his whole family is still there. We flew into Rome and stayed there for a couple of days and then headed out to the country. It was a GREAT trip. I do remember being a little stressed because I was in the middle of training for my half marathon, but I got a couple of runs in.

I ran around this

(Source)

And I got a run in out in the country. This is the view from our hotel room

I love running on vacation. I actually got lost on my run in Rome, and it was awesome. We didn’t stay long in Rome before heading to the country, so on my run I got to see things I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. I highly recommend bringing your sneakers and getting lost on your next vacation! šŸ˜‰

While in the country, we spent a day helping out on the farm. Erm’s uncle and his family grow tomatoes, boil them, run them through the machine, and then bottle the puree that comes out in beer bottles to sell at the market. He is actually known as “the guy with the tomatoes in the beer bottles” in town, and people were coming to the house for days after the market looking for him!

Washing the tomatoes with my father in law…each one has to be washed and the bruised/blackening ones need to be tossed

And we filled the bottles together, too. It was great bonding time šŸ™‚

On Saturday, we attacked 8 bushels of tomatoes! My in-laws had already washed them all and cut the tops off, and some were already draining by the time we got there

We set up the machine

And got to work. Erm loaded the tomatoes in, I was in charge of pushing them down. With my other hand, I was making sure that all the seed and skins ended up in the bowl, and not in the pot of puree

My mother in law prepares the jars with some basil from the garden

And they are filled

And then the jars are boiled so that the lids seal up.

106 jars later, we are all set for the year

I have to tell you… puree in a can does not compare to this fresh stuff. All that’s in there is salt and basil and delicious tomatoes. I love being part of a family that puts so much importance on fresh food, and knowing where your food comes from. A day of work is completely worth it for a year of delicious sauce šŸ˜€

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9 Responses to You say to-may-to…

  1. Kristy says:

    What a day! That is fabulous all those jars of sauce, what a great thing! I am jealous!! šŸ™‚

  2. That is seriously so awesome! I am really getting into trying to make my own stuff like this, and what you’ve done here is totally amazing! I can only imagine how fresh and deilcious it will taste all year round. šŸ™‚

  3. of course I meant “delicious.” Typing too fast!

  4. Oh wow! I’m fascinated by this process! So awesome!

  5. Kathie says:

    Thanks for the ” canning ” lesson. It’s so satisfying to go back to our roots and discover how our food is made. A few simple, garden fresh ingredients and we’re purring like kittens! America’s agriculture is due for a turn around and you are part of the solution.

  6. Suzanne says:

    Looks like a fab day. I have a secret dream to spend the day with an Italian family canning tomatoes. I just did 3 bushels on my own a few weeks ago but it’s not the same as doing it with family.

  7. Robyn says:

    Just like Teresa and her fam made sauce on Housewives of NJ haha. I love marinara, I can put it on anything, so I can only drool over how fresh and delicious this must taste.

  8. Tina says:

    I love seeing the sights you don’t normally see on trips. The little quaint places make it so much better. Your trip sounded fabulous and all that sauce looks delicious!

  9. Pingback: Winemaking for the non-winemaker Part 2 | Hit the Bricks

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