Home-canned Tomato Soup--Well worth the trouble!!
Ever thought of canning your own tomato soup? Seem like a lot of trouble? I mean, you can buy it in a can for . . say. . under a buck. But this is REAL tomato soup--rich with basil and with enough substance to serve for dinner! Add a grilled cheese sammie and you've got a real adult meal!
Of course, tomato soup starts with tomatoes--Ripe, red tomatoes picked at the peak of ripeness and processed. Or frozen to be transformed into a tomato delicacy in the dead of winter.
So here's the easiest way to make your own high-quality tomato soup. First, tomatoes. Paste tomatoes (like Romas or San Marzanos) are a great start, although the recipe in this post was developed using standard tomatoes.
Yields 12 pints
- 6 Qts tomatoes, washed stemmed, and quartered
- 3 T. Chicken soup base (I used Wylers)
- 1 c. tomato paste
- 1 large onion, cut in 4 large chunks
- 1/2 lemon
- 6 T. butter
- 1 c. Ultra Gel (may use less if using paste tomatoes)
- Prepare tomatoes by washing, stemming, and quartering.
- Put in a large heavy pan (Ceramic-lined Dutchoven is good) with 1/2 cup water and cook very slowly until soft.
- Let the tomatoes form their own juice as they simmer. Cook until tender.
- Run tomatoes through a food mill to extract the juice. (I use a KitchenAid attachment)
- Put the tomato juice back in the pan, add the chicken bouillon, tomato paste, and onion pieces
- Squeeze the half lemon into the soup, then add the lemon peel.
- Cook for two or more hours, until slightly thickened
- Season to taste, then remove the onion pieces and lemon peel.
- Add the butter. After butter is melted, stir in the Ultra Gel with a wire whisk to the desired consistency.
- Heat to boiling, ladle into pint jars, leaving 1/4" headspace, cap, and process in a water bath canner for 30 minutes.