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Making Yellow Tomato Preserves

October 11th, 2010

This year I started 2 small yellow cherry tomato plants just to make a recipe from Preserving the Taste. I checked it out of the library a few years ago and bought a copy when I found an old version because I loved the recipes so much.

It’s a small cookbook packed with delicious recipes like: caramelized apple marmalade with thyme, rose geranium jelly, pear ginger jam, cranberry ketchup, and more. I made the apple marmalade last year and it quickly became a favorite of all who tried it. My favorite thing about this cookbook, is that she uses herbs and spices in almost every recipe.

This little cookbook really takes canning recipes to the next level and makes them healthier as herbs and spices are packed with vitamins and minerals. I’m always trying to find ways to incorporate herbs into my food and this is a great way.

Yellow Tomato Preserves
(makes 4 half-pint jars)
from Preserving the Taste

4 cups sugar
5 cups very small yellow pear shaped tomatoes
3 fresh jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
3 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves
3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In a 4-6 quart heavy nonreactive pan, stir together the sugar and 3/4 cup of water. Set over medium heat and bring to a boil. Wash down any sugar crystals that accumulate on the sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in cold water.

Insert candy thermometer and continue boiling until until the syrup has reached 234 degrees F, the soft-ball stage.

Immediately stir in tomatoes. The mixture might seize up, but after a few minutes will again become liquid. Stir in the chilies, basil and lemon juice and turn heat to very low. Continue simmering for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. The mixture will have thickened and darkened in color.

Ladle into hot, sterilized jars, wipe rims clean with a damp towel, and seal with new lids and metal rings. Process in hot-water bath canner for 10 minutes. Preserves will continue to thicken as they cool.


I’ve been waiting for enough little yellow tomatoes to ripen so I could make this recipe. I didn’t get enough (must plant a few more next year) so I had to settle with a half batch. Since I only ended up with a few handfuls of tomatoes, I only got two small jars of preserves. It was well worth the effort to fire up the canner though, I’ll be happy to have a jar for the winter.

These preserves have a wonderful sweet tomato taste with a hint of spice from the jalapeño and the basil really adds a wonderful touch. The little tomatoes become almost candied in the sugar syrup and the peels seem to melt into the preserves (so don’t be worried about leaving them in). I enjoyed some on toast and now am trying to figure out where I can tuck in a few more yellow cherry tomato plants next year!

Have you discovered any new canning recipes this year? Do you like herbs and spices in your preserves?

15 Comments to “Making Yellow Tomato Preserves”
  1. Shannon on October 11, 2010 at 7:47 am

    I always want to make recipes for preserves, but oh the sugar content! I just can’t bring myself to do it. Maybe if it was just a little bit of honey.
    Shannon´s last post ..Autumn Menu Plan

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  2. Sense of Home on October 11, 2010 at 8:49 am

    I tried green tomato jam this year for the first time. It is wonderful with the lemon in the recipe it tastes like lemon jam. I also try to add herbs to my recipes wherever I can.

    -Brenda
    Sense of Home´s last post ..Spaghetti Squash with Shitake Mushrooms

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  3. Patrice Wassmann on October 11, 2010 at 9:57 am

    OH! I have tons of yellow cherry tomatoes going to waste because we didn’t like their flavor! Wonder if I can glean enough to try this!

    Reply to Patrice Wassmann's comment

  4. Julia on October 11, 2010 at 10:45 am

    I see you are using jars with the rubber “gaskets”. Are these reusable? I know the lids that come with the ball jars are not, so I have to buy new lids every year.

    Reply to Julia's comment

  5. Joshua on October 11, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    This year, I planted some yellow “pear” tomatoes and ended up not liking their mild flavor as much as their red “cherry” cousins. But the plant was prolific, and I ended up with gallons of the things, and I couldn’t find any staisfying recipes for them. Finally, I just tossed them all into the food grinder with the other components of my normal salsa recipe–onion, garlic, cilantro, jalapeno, and so on. It shouldn’t have been a revelation, but it was delicious. The insight was that “salsa” doesn’t really need a recipe. It’s just a mash of yummy veggies, delivered on a chip.
    Joshua´s last post ..Useful Household Knots- Bowline

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  6. stacey on October 11, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Great site – I have made green tomato chutney – never tried yellow tomatoes before…they look yummy though!

    Reply to stacey's comment

  7. heather best on October 11, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    We are swimming!!! in yellow pear tomatoes. I wish I could share. you make this sound so yummy that even though I swore I was done canning I just might have to give this a try.

    Reply to heather best's comment

  8. Kristin on October 12, 2010 at 1:03 am

    Oh, your timing is brilliant! I just stripped the last several cups off the monster yellow pear tomato plant that ate two huge cages and a lantern hook this year, and was trying to work myself up to canning them. This recipe sounds so intriguing, I now know what must be done with them. It is fate; it is their destiny.

    Reply to Kristin's comment

  9. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by mark mile, Susy Morris. Susy Morris said: Making Yellow #Tomato #Preserves http://goo.gl/fb/pJ5By #canning #recipe [...]

    Reply to Tweets that mention Yellow Tomato Preserves Recipe | Chiot’s Run — Topsy.com's comment

  10. Jackie on October 12, 2010 at 7:14 pm

    Nice Weck jars. I’ve just started using them this year. So far, they work well. The only downside is that some of the sizes don’t fit very well into the canner. The asparagus jars would fit well horizontally, except my canner is too short!
    Jackie´s last post ..The sophistication of chickens is questioned in Carmel

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  11. Peggy on October 13, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    Have you had your Weck canning jars for long? I’ve been trying to find some for a number of years but the shipping cost to Alaska (at the time) was prohibitive. However we are now in Indiana so I am on the search once again.

    I absolutely love this book! I have made virtually all her recipes. We go through phases but right now our favorite preserve is kiwi jam. Later this week I am hoping to put up some garlic jelly and roasted onion jam. Oh how I love these on a croissant or hearty whole granin bread with a bowl of tomato soup on a blustery day!

    We made a batch of her fig jam recently but only have one jar left… hmm I wonder how that happened?!?
    Peggy´s last post ..The big revealthe living room!

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    • Susy on October 13, 2010 at 10:17 pm

      I got these little beauties at Lehman’s on clearance ($6 for 12 – I bought all 4 boxes they had). You can buy them through a place called Glass Haus I think (check the Weck website), it would be cheaper to order a large bunch I think for shipping. I buy them locally at Lehman’s since they have them, for more than the internet, but with shipping they probably end up being the same. I really love them because they have glass lids and rubber seals. I’ve been using them for part of my canning for 3 years now.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. Marcia on October 15, 2010 at 7:29 pm

    I made Spicy Peach Chutney and I just love it. It’s great on meats, on cheese and on plain old bread. I did not have some of the ingredients the recipe called for so I improvised and I think the result might be better for it.

    Reply to Marcia's comment

  13. [...] favorite preserve, Caramelized Apple Marmalade with Thyme is from it. One of my favorites, Yellow Tomato Preserves, is also from this little book. I also love the 1973 edition of Stocking Up: How to Preserve the [...]

    Reply to Friday Favorite: Cookbooks Old and New | Chiot’s Run's comment

  14. ashley on August 2, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    I made this recipe today and i must say i was pleasently surprised! It was fantastic! I made 3 little 12 oz jars for family to try and then kept some for myself to have with cream cheese and crackers! wonderful recipe, taste’s fantastic and i definately plan to make more. thanks bunches for sharing!

    Reply to ashley's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but just recently moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine.

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