"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister

A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Canning: Tomato Soup

Homemade Tomato Soup
My SIL sent a pint of her home-canned tomato soup. The recipe was shared by her friend. She was planning to sell it, so she eliminated the addition of cream at the end to lessen the possibility of ending up with high pH. I liked it, so I also tried to make my own. However, I used much less of the chicken broth, so that I would not have to simmer for a long time to reduce the volume and thicken the soup. I did make up for the less chicken broth by including the chicken meat I had (about 1/2 cup in 1 qt of my homemade chicken broth). I still ended up with a pH of 4.15, which is still way below that is generally required of canned veggies (4.5) and since this is tomato based, my pH is even much lower than the allowable pH for tomatoes (4.7). This meant that I could process this in a boiling water bath canner instead of the pressure canner. Well, that is my theory. If anyone would like to try this recipe to can, do it at your own risk. This is an experimental phase for me, and this trial canning will provide me with a chance to observe whether my theory will be good, IF a jar of this is not spoiled and still good to eat by the end of a whole year (provided it is stored in a dark, cool place like a cellar.). So, blogging about my recipe here is not about encouraging my readers to try this for canning purposes, but rather for me to serve as notes on canning (the same way I take notes of my cooking/baking experiments). The thing about experimenting with canning is, the real test is at the end of its supposed shelf-life, which is usually one year (if it lasts more than that, the better). Only by the end of a whole year will I be able to make a conclusion on whether the recipe and method is a keeper or not. So, I should re-visit this post one year from now and make updates.

This does not taste at all like the store-bought tomato soup in cans. It actually has a taste closer to that of a spaghetti sauce, but the taste added by my homemade chicken broth somehow made it taste more like Filipinized version, that's why I loved it.  I bet this would be a great soup to sip in the morning while munching on hot pandesal.

Tools Needed:


Ingredients:

10 pounds tomatoes
10 medium onions
30 cloves garlic, peeled
4 green bell pepper, cored and seeds removed
1/3 cup olive oil
1 qt chicken broth (with meat bits)
salt and pepper to taste
dried herb spices (I used 3 pinches crushed rosemary, 1 tbsp crushed basil, 1 tbsp parsley flakes)
3 tbsp sugar

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 425 °F.

Place tomatoes in deep pans. Peel the onions and place in pans as well. Cut the green peppers in half and place in pans cut side down. Scatter the garlic cloves into these pans. Drizzle the olive oil onto the veggies. Roast for 30 minutes.

After roasting, squeeze out excess juice and run the tomatoes through a vegetable strainer or food mill. Place the tomato juice/sauce into a big stock pot and set aside.

Place all other veggies in a big stainless steel stock pot, add the chicken broth, and puree using an immersion blender. Pour this into the stockpot of tomato juice/sauce and blend well. Add salt and pepper to taste, and mix in the dried herb spices and sugar. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid scorching, while sterilizing the jars and boiling the water to submerge the lids in.

Ladle the hot soup into the sterile jars. Wipe rim of jar. Adjust lids and bands. Process for 30 minutes in a boiling water canner. When ready to serve, re-heat. Add cream as desired, and sprinkle crushed crackers on top. Or you can add shredded sharp cheddar cheese and enjoy with toasted garlic bread instead.  Very good and healthy light lunch/supper.


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