October 27, 2013

Canning Green Tomato Enchilada Sauce

I always found it incredibly annoying when I find what sounds like a promising recipe on a blog and I have to scroll through several pages of text before I can get to the actual recipe...so for the impatient amongst us, click here to jump to the Green Tomato Enchilada Sauce Recipe.

Green Tomato Enchilada Sauce

All good things to those who wait…and wait…and wait…

Tomato season is officially at an end. We harvested the last of our green tomatoes about 2 weeks ago and we planed to can some green enchilada sauce that weekend. But the weekend got away from us, and Monday came up too fast. Monday is my day off, so now the plan is for me to do the canning by myself. It is usually a two-person job split between Kristy and I. I am hoping to get the canning done in the morning and have the rest of the day to catch up on other things.


…Several hours later…In the afternoon...

Kristy came home to a very tired husband...

But seeing as I am in the third or fourth hour of this adventure/ordeal, with probably 1.5 to 2 hours to go, I can see why we usually do this as a team. The thing about canning is that it is so labor and time intensive. And so much of it is active time.

Some of the steps can be done concurrently such as processing the sauce and sanitizing the jars, but is much easier when two people can split the duties.

I ended up with 20 pint-size jars of enchilada sauce. That will certainly last us for many, many months. So as always with canning, the long-term benefit is worth it (for certain things). It just involves some short-term pain. So if you would like a way to use up your green tomatoes, it might be worth a try.


This recipe has not been tested according to USDA standards. It is merely the recipe that we used for our own consumption for the past two seasons and we accepted the risks (so far so good…no deaths yet). The following website is an official one that can offer official tested recipes. I am including our recipe just to show the steps I went through. If you use this recipe, do so at your own risk!!! Or you can always make the sauce, but skip the canning!

National Center for Home Food Preservation

How Not to Die from Botulism

Green Tomato Enchilada Sauce

(I believe that this recipe is Kristy's modified & mashed-up version of several recipies)
2.5 lbs green tomatoes, diced
1 large onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons ground cumin
3 green peppers (bell, anaheim, poblano or any combo), broiled until blackened then peeled, seeded and roughly chopped (optional)
3 1/2-4 cups water or broth
1-2 tsp Salt

Wash all the jars and canning equipment in hot soapy water. (Each batch makes about 7 pints). Rinse well.

In a large pot or skillet, sauté the onions in some olive oil until translucent and soft.
Add the cumin and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally for a few more minutes. Add the tomatoes, roasted peppers and water or broth and salt to taste. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 20-30 minutes until the tomatoes are mostly broken down.

While the sauce is cooking, sanitize clean canning jars in boiling water for 10 minutes.
In a separate pan begin simmering water and add the canning lids about 5 minutes before you will need them.

Once the sauce has cooked, blend or process the tomatoes in the food processor until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning. Return the sauce to a boil.

After you sanitize the jars, remove the jars from the boiling water and add 1 Tbs of lime juice to each jar.

Fill each jar with the sauce, leaving ½ inch of headspace. Wipe the edge of the jars to make sure they are clean and place the lids on the jars. Lightly tighten the rings (just as tight as you can with two fingers).

Process the jars in a water bath for 35 minutes (at sea level…you will need to add additional time as you increase in elevation).

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