These first two are the massive fucking amount of tomatos that were in my kitchen. There's two because I couldn't fit all the tomatoes in one frame:
all in all, it was four bushels and a peck. Which, for anyone who doesn't recognize those measures, is about 226 pounds (or about 100 kilos)
so, anyway, first you have to boil the tomatoes so that you can peel them.
then, you peel them, and chop them into bits, and run them through a food mill. I actually don't have pictures of that, because my hands were all tomato-y, so I couldn't take any. But I did take a picture of my food mill for posterity.
It's pretty simple, really. Tomatoes go in, you crank the knob, and sauce comes out the bottom and into the crock. Oh, yeah, I own a crock. Like one of those things your grandma has in her basement.
That one's not mine, but they're all basically the same except for size. Mine is 20 U.S. Gallons. I use that because it's the only thing that'll hold a fucking monstrous amount of tomatoes.
So, anyway, sauce goes into the crock, but it's not sauce yet. You have to cook the water out of it. So, it goes into sauce pots:
and sits on the stove for about four hours. At this point, you wash the jars. For four and a quarter bushels, I had to wash 45 jars. Then you boil them (I borrowed the neighbor's stove for that) and then you set them out next to the sauce. I don't have pictures of any of this either, so here's a smiling tomato:
So, since the jars are sterile and the sauce is done, you pour the sauce into the jars, put a lid and a band on it, and then leave it alone. Now, you wait for them to pop. The lids are made so that the pressure and heat of the jar pulls them in, sealing the jar. If they don't pop, use it right away. If they pop, stack the jars up in the cellar and you have fresh sauce for winter!
That's basically all there is to it. This year, I put up 42 quarts (that's 42 jars like in the picture) and they'll definitely be gone by next summer. Not to mention all the pears, peaches, peppers, asparagus, beets, carrots, beans, and trout that I canned. Plus all the jams and jellies I made. 14 pints of raspberry alone, and I picked all the raspberries myself.
Oh, and here's a picture of me
, for those of you who don't know what I look like.