I spent my day today in the kitchen making salsa to can.
I got tired of the manual food strainer I used last year so I used my holiday bonus last year to buy this attachment for my Kitchen Aid Mixer. This will be my first time using it.
I also bought the food tray so it will hold more on top. I read several reviews before making the purchase and everyone advised buying it and it looks like I will be glad that I did.
And here it is attached to the mixer and ready to go.
First wash the tomatoes - I have approximately 16 lbs of tomatoes here. I also had 2 lbs of tomallitos.
Then cut into chunks and heat on the stove so they will go through the food strainer easier - if your pot is as full as mine, carefully stir so you get the bottom ones up and off the bottom - don't want anything burning!
Then run through the food strainer. This worked so well - I can't believe I have had this mixer for years and never knew they had an attachment to do this! The juice comes out the bottom and the seeds and skins out the other end all ready for the compost pile.
Then I put it on a burner and start it heating right away while I am cutting up the rest of the ingredients - it will be way too thin and you need to reduce it by at least half. I just add the other ingredients as I cut them up. I started out with 8 quarts of tomato juice.
I cut up 1 pound of hot chili peppers. I use the long anaheim type peppers.
I cut up 3 pounds of onions (not all are shown here ) and 2 oz. of garlic.
Then I added 1.5 pounds of bell peppers - I used a variety of colors because that is what I grow - lots of colors - they will all look green in the end - the pigment cooks out.
Then I added 3 cups of vinegar and 1 Tablespoon of salt.
And I continued to let it all cook down - stirring it occasionally so nothing sticks to the bottom and burns.
And here it is 7 hours later - reduced by about half. I went out to the garden and cut some fresh oregano, basil and parsley which I chopped up and added. You don't want to add fresh herbs until the end.
I filled 7 sterilized jars, put on 2 piece seals and processed in a boiling water bath for 30 minutes.
And here is the finished product.
There is no right or wrong way to make salsa. This made a mild to medium salsa - mild enough for my son to eat, but spicy enough to taste. If you like it hotter add more chili peppers or use a hotter variety. Want more onions - add more. Don't like garlic - add less (I love garlic and always go heavy on it in all of my recipes). Just experiment and taste as you go.
I'm tired now - but it is so worth taking the time to homemade salsa.