Cherry tomatoes good to can?

Hi, Folks -
My tomatoes did well this year, thank goodness. This is Southern California coastal.
The cherry tomatoes really went ape. (That they are next to the compost heap may be a factor!)
I canned some regular tomatoes earlier this year.
Now wondering if anyone has experience/comment on whether cherry tomatoes are good for canning. If so, would you can whole, or puree, or...?
Thanks for advice.
--
Persephone

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<Persephone> wrote in message

We had an abundance in cherry tomatoes one year and used them to make tomato juice, which we canned. The juice tasted fine, although it was sweeter than our usual tomato juice because they were one of the super-sweet varieties. The one problem we encountered was that the juice was more watery than our usual tomato juice. We haven't canned any since, but I would suggest cooking them longer so that more of the liquid evaporates.
I really can't imagine using them in any other way. Trying to peel them for whole tomatoes would take forever, and leaving the skins on unreasonable because the skins are usually very tough.
JPS
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On 9/26/05 1:08 AM, in article wnLZe.19447$Ix4.10573@okepread03, "B & J"

I missed this first time around! Try drying the cherry tomatoes! excellent.
Cheryl
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Persephone wrote:

I have a couple of Roma plants that I use primarily for sauce, but when all the other plants go wild, and produce more than I can eat fresh, what's left goes into the sauce, too.
I don't peal or seed any tomatoes before making sauce. I do cut-out hard cores and scabby skin from the heirlooms. Big tomatoes get cut in half (or thirds or quarters), but otherwise they all go into the food processor until it looks like a soupy, pale salsa. I simmer at 195-200 degrees until about 1/4 or 1/3 of the volume cooks-off, and the hot mix looks like a lumpy sauce -- usually about 24-36 hours for my three gallon kettle. The mix is then cooled in an ice bath, and run through the blender to smooth it.
Yeah, two trips through appliances sounds like a lot of work. The dishwasher gets full pretty fast. But it's still easier -- and quicker -- than pealing and seeding tomatoes. And more of the vegetable goes into the sauce than into the compost pile.
Even though I never have the same mix of varieties of tomatoes in each batch I make, the differences in the finished sauce are no different than what you'd get from two different brands of canned sauce. It's all good by the time it's cooked down, and when I actually use it, it'll get seasoned to taste anyway.
I freeze my sauce, so I don't have to worry about the acidity level as much as I would if I canned it. If your mix is too many super-sweet cherry tomatoes, you may want to add some lemon juice or vinegar to raise the acidity level before canning.
--
Warren H.

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Persephone said:

I like to dry them (dehydrators are fairly inexpensive and should last for many years). I cut them in half and lay them on the racks. Dried cherry tomatoes are sweet enough to eat out of hand, but also have that concentrated dried tomato tang. Love them added to spinach and feta omelets!
--
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)

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On 9/26/05 6:28 AM, in article snipped-for-privacy@comcast.com, "Pat

I use dried tomatoes as the base "sauce" for a quick pasta meal. I'll start with olive oil, some garlic, the tomatoes and go from there. Trader Joe's frozen artichokes, capers, spinach, Swiss chard, hot Italian sausage (leftovers), lots of things work. Just toss in a fry pan and go. I add a little of the pasta water if I have it, otherwise, tap water works. Toss in the pasta to warm it up and delish. Doesn't even need cheese! just a grind of salt and pepper.
Cheryl
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snipped-for-privacy@someplace.net.net (Pat Kiewicz) wrote:

I was going to second Cheryl's suggestion-- but I'll 'third' yours. I didn't even plant Cherry Tomatoes this year, but I've dried the excess in the past. I had a bunch of extra Sweet 100's this year and dried them. . . .. candy.
Cherry tomatoes are so easy to do, too. Cut them in half & leave them. I have trouble with thre romas sticking sometimes, but not the little tomatoes that are put in the drier skin side down. I've seen the dehydrators at garage sales for $5. [if your oven can be set to 120-140 F, that would work, too, for a cookie sheet full of tomato halves.]
I guarantee that if you try them once you'll dry more and more tomatoes every year. Aside from tasting great, it is the easiest, cheapest and most space efficient way of putting tomatoes up. [I use mine in sauces, as snacks all by themselves, and to stiffen up my home made salsa that gets a little watery in the canning process.]
Jim
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On 9/27/05 8:29 AM, in article snipped-for-privacy@4ax.com,

I freeze salsa. When I defrost, I drain it and add the liquid to chili, taco, soup.
Waste not!
Cheryl
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wrote:

OK, OK, you guys (almost) have me talked into it. But my wall ovens are kaput, and my toaster oven only goes down to 150.
a. Is that too high? What if i leave the door cracked open?
b. If OK to proceed, how long do I leave the tomatoes in there?
c. After they're done, how do I store them?
Tx
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On 9/27/05 6:03 PM, in article snipped-for-privacy@4ax.com, "Persephone" <Persephone> wrote:

Storage - glass jar with tight lid.
Cheryl
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Persephone wrote:
-snip-

I might be tempted to put a trouble light with a 100watt bulb in one of those 'kaput' ovens. Crack the door.

At 150 with the door cracked it should work.

Many variables-- but I'd put them in early on a day that you can check them every couple hours. [if you only sleep 4-5 hours, you'll probably be fine putting them in before you go to bed] Once they get past a certain point they go from soft leather to flint very quickly. I like mine best at the stiff leather stage. Halved cherries have the advantage of being pretty uniform in size and having skin attached to all pieces so it is easier to get a whole batch done at once.

I store mine in a ziploc bag or canning jar. After a couple weeks or so I put them in the freezer. The freezer might be an excess of caution, but I would hate to lose a bagful to mold & I have the space in my freezer. They keep for years in the freezer if they get lost.
More info here- http://doityourself.com/fruits/dryingtomatoes.htm [that slow-roasting looks yummy- but I think my tomatoes are done for the season.]
and here- http://www.ghorganics.com/Sun%20Dried%20Tomatoes.htm Note that they use a 200 degree oven-- and place their halved cherries with the sliced side down. I salt mine lightly & put them skin side down so they don't stick.
Enjoy! Jim
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wrote:

Interesting approach!

Muchas gracias, Jim, for all those good tips.
Once the little critters are dried, I assume it'll be OK to email you a sample...no moisture to disrupt the electronics...<g>
--
Persephone

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On Sun, 25 Sep 2005 13:31:29 -0700, Persephone wrote:

'Preciate all the interesting messages about drying. Not planning to get a dehydrator at this stage, however. Will just do standard canning -- or maybe freeze.
--
Persephone

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