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Green Tomato Mincemeat

 

This recipe is not original, but I have used it just about every year around this time.  Just before the first frost, when we are gathering any leftovers from the garden, we always seem to have a small amount of green tomatoes.  If left on the vine, they will be no good, and they no longer have the time and the sun to turn red.  Green tomatoes have very little taste so they tend to absorb the flavors of whatever they are mixed.  I know of some who even make raspberry jam by mixing chopped green tomatoes with raspberry Jello. And some folks bread them and fry them.  My preference, however, has always been making mincemeat, for the holidays are right around the corner, and mincemeat pie is one of our favorites.  In older recipes, they actually called for chopped meat (hence, mincemeat), but then recipes began to call for just suet instead (a kind of lard like substance taken from beef); then recipes decided to switch the suet for even margarine.  All these stemmed from the fact that this was once a meat-like pie with some protein.  Since I like mincemeat pie as a dessert and am not looking for protein, and given our current society’s concern for clogged arteries and better healthy choices, etc., I have omitted altogether any meat or suet or margarine.  I think the flavor is even better.  This recipe actually hails from Ball’s Blue Book of Canning and mine is copyrighted in 1966, though there have been many more editions since then.  You will need a pressure cooker for these, though if you seal the jars with just 1/8 inch headspace and refrigerate, it would probably keep for about a week.  If they are canned, they will keep for a year or so.  Enjoy!


Green Tomatoes

 

2 quarts cored and chopped green tomatoes (about 20 small)
1 tablespoon salt
1 orange
2 ½ quarts peeled, pared, chopped apples (about 12 medium)
1 pound raisins
3 ½ cups brown sugar, packed
½ cup vinegar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cloves
 ½ teaspoon ground ginger

 

Sprinkle salt over tomatoes and let stand for one hour.  Drain.  Cover tomatoes with boiling water and let stand 5 minutes; drain again.  Grate orange peeling and chop orange pulp into pieces.  Mix all ingredients together and cook until mixture is boiling hot.  Pour, boiling hot, into canning jars (I use quarts) leaving 1/8 inch head space (Note: if you did add suet or meat, you need to allow the headspace one full inch).  Process 25 minutes in a pressure cooker at 10 pounds pressure.  Yield: about 5 quarts.


 

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