Yes, like everyone else in America, I have decided to try canning. Andy thinks it’s creepy (reminiscent of eyeballs floating in formaldehyde) and I have to admit that I can see where he’s coming from with that. But it’s still fairly useful when you have major surpluses of garden produce and limited freezer space. It seems like a good interim solution until I get one of those Count Dracula Coffin-style freezers for all my green beans. One does wonder what takes more energy in the end: the freezer space, or the rather energy-intensive canning process. I’m guessing that the freezer takes more energy, but I bet it’s by a narrower margin than we’d think.
In addition to the “Cherokee Trail of Tears” green beans, the Sungold cherry tomatoes were one of the major drivers of canning this year. Damn those things are prolific. And they really don’t taste very good. This year I dispensed with full sized tomatoes entirely and grew Botanical Interest’s “Cherry Tomato Rainbow Blend” which features eight varieties of cherry tomatoes. The only ones I would grow again are the cherry version of the “Great White” tomato (DELICIOUS, very sweet), and “Sweetie.” The rest were a real disappointment, and Sungold (I think it was “Sungold” and not “Gold Nugget”) was an outright problem because there were too many and they weren’t that good.
Making a sauce with cherry tomatoes is another thing I probably won’t do again. That is a lot of work. The end result (with sugar added) was pretty good, but only because I kept diluting it with other types of tomatoes over a 2 day process.
The other thing we had a lot of this year was tomatillos and hot peppers, which I made into a salsa verde that we also canned. I’m hoping this will be a nice holiday gift along with an enchilada recipe. I’ve used the recipe in “Canning for a New Generation,” and it came out pretty good.