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BHM's Homesteading & Self-Reliance Forum
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Go Back   BHM Forum > Homesteading > Food > Canning/Preserving

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Old 07-29-2010, 03:38 PM
percysgirl Female percysgirl is offline
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Default If you were given 2 gallons of tomato paste...

... what would you do?

It is commercially canned and close to its expiration date. One of them is a #10 can. I know tomato paste tends to eat through the cans and isn't the best thing to store long-term and it's not something we go through large amounts of. So what can I do with it?

Is there something I can turn it into and can it in my own jars? I don't have much freezer space. The canning recipes I have all call for starting with tomatoes in order to make things like BBQ sauce and pizza sauce, so I'm not sure how to go about using my own recipes for those items and knowing how to process them safely.
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:22 PM
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momma_to_seven_chi Female momma_to_seven_chi is offline
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I would put small amounts in containers and freeze them for pizza, sloppy joes, spag sauce,etc. I wouldn't actually make it into anything until I opened them to use them. And since it is older, I would probably just put a few tablespoons each in baggies/double baggies and freeze. That way, if you don't use it within a reasonable period of time, you could just toss it without wasting all that extra work. Especially since it is free, and old, I wouldn't put a lot of work into it at this point, rather just store until I could use.

If you like to dehydrate, some people do that too. Make it into a leather, then cut it up, rehydrate and use in recipes.

And remember just because it expires doesn't necessarily mean it's bad. You can still use it as long as it smells ok. Or at least, I would with no fear.
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Old 07-29-2010, 04:29 PM
esh Female esh is offline
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You can add water and re-can it as tomato sauce. You can also add your own spices and re-can it as spaghetti sauce, bbq, sloppy joe sauce. You can alter the recipes that start with tomatoes by simply skipping the 'cooking down' of the tomatoes. Search online there will be some recipes that start with tomato sauce or paste you can use. Lucky girl! Enjoy!
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:01 PM
LouKy Female LouKy is offline
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I'd do what esh said.
And also, Jackie Clay says that just because there's an expiration date on the can, doesn't mean it's going to go bad. According to her, canned foods are good indefinitely and if Jackie says it, I believe it!
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:49 PM
percysgirl Female percysgirl is offline
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Thanks, esh. Any idea of what ratio to dilute it into? I'd love to get some pizza, BBQ and spaghetti sauce on hand.

They found another #10 can. So that makes two of those plus probably 40 of the smaller cans in varying sizes. I haven't counted yet.

I am aware that canned goods have a 'long shelf life' past their expiration date. I routinely keep and eat cans well past the stamped date. HOWEVER, everything I've ever read that had an in-depth analysis of it said that very acidic products like tomato paste and mandarin oranges would go bad much faster, within a year of their marked date, because of the acidity eating through the lining and the can. Plus we've already lost a few cans because the storage conditions were damp and the cans were eaten through. So I'd much rather get these out of the can and into glass for safe-keeping. Hence the question.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:38 PM
Mom5farmboys Mom5farmboys is offline
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In the past I have used gallon size cans of tomato paste when making my homemade spaghetti sauce. Instead of cooking it down to thicken it I would add the entire can to my largest stockpot of homemade sauce and then can as directed in the recipe.
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Old 07-31-2010, 05:43 PM
esh Female esh is offline
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I would start out with half as much water as paste and stir each batch to the consistency you prefer that particular sauce.
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