Introduction: Homemade General Use Sauce

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From raw tomato to delicious sauce in a few easy steps. This receipt gives you a general use sauce that will work great for pasta, pizza, and a dipping sauce for many other culinary delights. Starting with 22 quarts of tomato juice will generate about 6 completed quarts of sauce. The cook time on this is roughly 4 hours total. 3 hours of light monitoring and 1 hour of heavy mixing.

Step 1: Prepare and Juice Fresh Tomatoes

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Choose which tomatoes you would like to use. Ideally use a sauce tomato which will produce more pulp/thick juice that will boil down easier due to less water. However any tomato will do. We use fresh tomatoes from our garden, as we know they are organic and pesticide free.

Wash all of the tomatoes and pull off the stems. We use the juicer on a kitchen-aid to juice our tomatoes. There is no need to peel them when using this juicer, however they need sliced in order to fit into the juicer. Juice the tomatoes and pour the juice into a large stock pot to boil.

Step 2: Boil the Juice to a Sauce

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Bring the mixture to a boil on the stove, and stir as necessary to prevent build up at the bottom of the pan. Scrap all portions of the bottom as build up can burn ruining the taste of the entire mixture. Use a rubber spatula to scrap the sides of the pot to add the thick paste back into the boiling mixture.

In this step boil until the sauce reaches your desired thickness. Mix it more regularly as the mixture gets thicker. The reduction is about a 3 to 1 ratio, meaning that the juice should be reduced to one third. Once you get to the right thickness then move to the next step.

Step 3: Season the Sauce

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This is the part where you add the flavoring, since this is a general use sauce, the flavoring is less aggressive then a specific sauce. Per quart of remaining material in the pot add the following amounts of spices. It is ok to ballpark how many materials are remaining. For example if there are 6 quarts remaining then multiply the ratio below by 6.

1 table spoon of parsley flakes

2 table spoons of mixed Italian seasoning

1/2 table spoon of black pepper

2 table spoons of onion powder

1 table spoon of garlic powder

1/2 table spoon of salt

Mix this together into the sauce and lower heat to a light simmer for 15 minutes. Then follow the next steps for canning.

Step 4: Canning Proceedure

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Sterilize the jars that you would like to use.

To preserve the sauce acid needs to be added to keep harmful bacteria from spreading. We use 1/2 a teaspoon of citric acid per quart jar, however 1/4 cup of lemon juice can be used as well. The lemon juice will slightly affect the flavor.

After adding the preserving agent add 1 clove of garlic and fill the jars leaving about 3/4 inch of head space.

Add a lid and band to the jar and boil in a water bath canner for the needed amount of time for your sea level elevation. In my area of the state of Ohio it is 20 minutes.

Remove the jars from the canner and check for a proper seal. If you can push the lid down it did not seal. Add a new band and lid and re-boil.

All that is left to do is crack open a jar and enjoy!

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