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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Freezing Tomatoes

The first hamper of tomatoes arrived mid-August, about two weeks earlier than normal.  I was quite excited to get a head start on tomatoes with the full intentions of processing ten hampers.  On August 28, my husband picked up the fourth hamper just before noon then headed to the office.  A couple of hours later as I was washing the tomatoes he was back experiencing severe abdominal pain.  I stopped what I was doing to care for him.  By early evening he was feeling fine.  I finished washing the tomatoes.  The next morning I was doing the prep work to make old fashioned chili sauce and a couple of batches of salsa.  I had everything measured for the chili sauce, jars heating in the boiling water bath canner when the door flew open, him back again in sever abdominal pain but even worse than the day before.  I took one look at him, called one of our kids to help me get him to the hospital, stuffed the prepped chili sauce ingredients into the fridge, turned off the stove and changed my shirt.  On the way to the hospital, he continued to deteriorate getting worse by the minute at the hospital and by 8:00 PM was admitted.  I came home around 11:30 PM after I was sure he was settled.  It had been a long, stressful day! 

crushed tomatoes packaged for freezing
The next morning he was scheduled for an ultra sound so before going to the hospital, I took the tomatoes that had been partially prepped for salsa (peeled, cut in half, drained but not seeded yet) out of the fridge.  I knew I wouldn't have time that day to make salsa so I packed the tomatoes tightly into freezer containers.  I don't freeze a lot of tomatoes because with the amount of tomatoes we use, we simply don't have enough freezer space and that's including the freezer compartments of two side-by-side refrigerators plus two chest freezers.  Still, freezing the tomatoes was a better option than having them spoil.

I prefer the rigid freezer containers over the zipper style freezer bags.  The containers with the dark blue lids are Ziploc and the ones with the light blue lids are Ball's new freezer containers.  Both have screw on lids so you know they won't pop off in the freezer.  I put the containers into the freezer then rushed up to the hospital where I stayed until 9:30 PM, arriving home tired but knew I had to do a bit of canning to tidy up.

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