Claudia and Hans Make Stuff

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How to Preserve Summer-time Salsa for Winter

It is super-simple and easy to make various types of salsas. Most of the recipes (at least the ones that I have made) just place everything in a blender and blend it to the desired consistency. Hans and I do not like chunky salsa, so this works great for us.

As our salsas were not chunky or temperature-sensitive, like some fruit salsas might be, I had a couple of different options to preserve the salsa for later.


Option 1: Canning hot salsa
This options works great for salsa recipes that require heating the salsa, like the Tomatillo Salsa. It can also be used for other salsas, but you will have to heat them on the stove slowly. I have done this with a tomato salsa before.

Here is what you do:
1. Make the salsa as you normally would. For the Tomatillo salsa, I heated the salsa to simmer it to reach the desired consistency. Tip, if you still need to add spices: take a bit of salsa and place it in the freezer to be able to test the spices of cold salsa. Hot salsa tastes strange.
2. Meanwhile, heat the jars for canning in hot water (only the jars, not the lids).
3. Carefully take one jar at a time out of the hot water bath. Tongs work well. I usually hold the jar using a kitchen towel. Then carefully ladle the hot salsa in the jar leaving just a bit of space on the top. Then make sure that the top and sides of the jar is clean. If not, wipe it clean with the kitchen towel. Place the lid and the band on and tighten. Turn the jar upside down (so that the salsa is touching the lid), I think this helps with the sealing process. Once cooled, you can store the jars right side up in a cool and dark place, like a pantry.
4. Enjoy fresh salsa in the middle of winter =)

Option 2: Freezing salsa that you do not want to heat
This option works great for any salsa that does not have large chunks of any ingredient in it. If there are chunks, these chunks will likely be soggy after defrosting. However, if your salsa is blended and there are no chunks, then freezing should not change the texture of your salsa.

Here is what you do:
1. Prepare the salsa as you normally would.
2. Laddle the salsa into ice cube trays and freeze over-night. The next day, you can remove the salsa cubes and place in a labeled freezer bag (or container) and return to the freezer.
3. Whenever, you want you can then thaw as many cubes as needed. Enjoy =)

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Freezing Homemade Pizza Sauce

Not that long ago, I made homemade pizza sauce from home-grown tomatoes and mentioned that it can either be used right away or stored for later by freezing.

I wanted to elaborate a bit on what I did.

What you need:
homemade pizza sauce =)
ice-cube trays
freezer bag (or container that can be frozen) and a marker

How to freeze pizza sauce:
1. Of course, make home-made pizza sauce. Odds are, you made more sauce than is needed for just one pizza. So now there are left-overs, which you could store in the refrigerator for a few days and then use on another pizza. Or…

2. You could use a pressure cooker to preserve the left-over pizza sauce. However, if you are like me, you may have a pressure cooker somewhere, but have no idea how to use it.  Or you may not even have a pressure cooker. So instead of using a pressure cooker, the pizza sauce can be stored by freezing it.

3. After making the sauce, allow it to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, fill the sauce into ice-cube trays. Make sure to not overfill the trays. Why would anybody freeze pizza sauce in an ice-cube tray instead of a freezer bag or storage container? Because freezing the sauce in the ice-cube tray, allows you to defrost small portions at a time, rather than defrosting the whole batch all at once.

4. Place the ice-cube tray in the freezer overnight. The next day, remove the frozen pizza sauce cubes and place them in a labeled freezer bag or storage container. You do not want to get confused what these cubes are later, especially if you start freezing other things in portions like this–unless you like surprises.

5. Whenever, you want to make pizza, just take the required number of cubes out of the freezer. Thaw and use on your pizza.

Ready to preserve goodness for later

Ready to preserve goodness for later

Frozen pizza sauce cubes

Frozen pizza sauce cubes