Tomatoes & Apples & More Apples

Can’t remember the last time I went to bed before 8 p.m. but tonight may just be the night!  Yesterday I got 19 quarts and 1 pint of tomatoes canned.  That was the total of the tomatoes we got yesterday and the last of the tomatoes for the year.  Then I made two more batches of Caramel Apple Jam.

This morning, as soon as breakfast was finished and the kitchen clean, I started making Apple Pie Filling to can.  I did not like making that!  Not sure what it was about it that I didn’t like, but I was happy to get it finished.  Maybe it was because it took so many apples to pack all those jars.  I made 14 quarts.  I figured if I had 12 quarts, we could have an apple pie once a month.  Now . . dang it . . we’ll have to have two pies a couple of months! 🙂

Anyway, I think/hope my canning is done for a while.  Here’s a section of my shelving where I keep my canned things:

It’s kind of a narrow spot and not easy to get a decent picture.  First shelf is tomatoes.  Second shelf is Caramel Apple Jam, Apple Pie Filling, more Caramel Apple Jam, Apple Butter and the Crabapple Jelly I made a while back.  Third shelf is a mixture — dog food (I buy the big bags and put it in the jars if I don’t have a 3.5 or 5 gallon bucket empty), sugar, and wheat.

I thought one of the jars of pie filling hadn’t sealed and I was going to make us an apple pie and then when I looked at it again, darned thing had sealed.  Then I said to myself . . good, because I’m too tired to make a pie.  Then I said to myself . . but I really want an apple pie.  Back and forth like that for a while.

When I started making the pie filling to be canned, the recipe called for lemon juice.  I use ascorbic acid so I figured that would do the same thing as the lemon juice but just when it got time to put everything in the jars, I got kinda scared and had Vince run to the store for some lemons.  I’d never canned apple pie filling before and figured I’d better follow the directions exactly .

So .. back to that apple pie.  When I make fruit pies, I always put a little bit of minute tapioca in the bottom of the pie shell before pouring in the fruit.  I didn’t have any so making a pie would have meant another trip to the grocery store.  Finally, I couldn’t stand it any longer and I went to the store and wouldn’t you know it . . minute tapioca is on sale this week and they were smack dab out of it!  OK . . do I go to Wal-Mart or do I go home and forget about the pie?  I had driven Vince’s pickup because it was behind my car so I decided to forget about it and go home.  On my way home, I happened to remember that Vince had bought about 4 boxes of tapioca on sale at Target when we were there one day and I’d stuck most of them in the freezer.  Yep, we had tapioca after all so I made my pie.

Isn’t that a long story just for an apple pie?  Sorry . . but it’s a very good pie.  Wish you had some! 🙂

The remainder of my day was spent cooking for next week.

There’s what I did!  Gumbo, apple pie, sweet & sour meat loaf, 16 stuffed peppers.  Chad doesn’t eat the stuffed peppers but he like the stuffing so in the orange bowl is some of the meat/rice mixture I can heat up for him.  Sometimes he doesn’t like other stuff we’re having so I made two little meat loaves to put in the freezer that I can thaw and cook for him when needed.  What a good mom I am .. even if I did “steal” his shirt!

All the cooking for this week didn’t get done but I got a good start on the week.


  1. 1

    Peggy says

    Any chance you could share your recipe for stuffed peppers? A lifetime ago my mom made great peppers. I never made them, thinking my DH wouldn’t like them. My DIL doesn’t cook much, but she made us stuffed peppers one night. DH loved them. I don’t think they were anything like my mom’s recipe which came from her mom who lived in TX. I thought since you are a southern girl, maybe yours would help me recall the one from the past.

    Your canning photo is amazing. Good job.

  2. 2


    I’d like your pepper recipe, too. I can sort of remember Mom’s, but I’m positive yours is dynamite!

    Lordy, I’m heading to your house in the event of a disaster! You’re stocked up on all sorts of goodies! Good for you!!!!!

  3. 3


    Wow Judy – that all looks just wonderful. I’m not the least surprised you’re tired, you did a lot today!

  4. 4


    I wish I knew how to can. I asked my mom about it, and she was freaked out by the idea that I would want to do that! So I can’t learn from her… bummer. Someday, when I have a pantry, I want it to look just like that! (minus the dog food – I don’t have pets!)

  5. 6


    I don’t know how you do it!

    Our garden did not do well. Especially our tomatoes. I was only able to can about 1/2 of what we normally do. And forget freezing corn, this year’s sweet corn crop was terrible! I guess it’s the corn from the store this year!

  6. 8

    becky rhodes says

    Yeah, I don’t care for bell peppers either but everything else sure looks good. I’d also like the receipe for the sweet and sour meat loaf. That is a new one on me.

  7. 10

    pdudgeon says

    a busy day very well spent! you deserve to go to bed early. your shelves of canned goods looks great.
    when i used to can i used pints, but i can remember going thru more than 13 dozen of those in a season easily.

  8. 11


    Hi Judy, Are you recovered yet? You must have been exhausted! But, I say good for you! I think that home canning is becoming a lost art. I was wondering about how you can your tomatoes. I froze most of mine this year and it works well, but I would like to put more up in jars next year. I would love it if you would share that, the stuffed bell pepper recipe and the meatloaf too!
    Thanks, Julia
    p.s. You inspire me in the kitchen as well as in the sewing room!

  9. 12


    Stashbusting. Well I haven’t kept track of the comings and goings of my fabric until now. But this past weekend when I was buying backings I thought it would be a good time to start. I am not sure if you saw my post about kitting planned projects but I easily kitted up a dozen and started making them.

    As I work in my room and find more stacks of fabrics with an intended project I have been putting those together. I see fabrics I bought just because and am already starting to look for a project that will work with those. So I am in!

  10. 13

    Cecilia says

    Wow ! Do you sleep?!! Do you have a recipe for the apple filling for pies? I am going to the orchards around here (Oak Glen,Ca) about 2 hours away next week. I have to get the apples done before my Gammill returns with it’s new Statler!! Yeah, can’t wait, I feel I ‘ve been in longarm withdrawal.

  11. 14


    Your canning looks wonderful Judy…..its so nice having the “food stash” in the pantry…….need something on short notice…..go to the “stash” and its right there. Tommorrow DH and I are canning meat……that stuff is so good.

    Karen L

    PS…..Do you want to know the tip on getting the apple filling in the jars easier????

  12. 15

    Laurie says

    I tried that caramel apple jam and it was great! We decided to call it applie pie jam because I think it tastes like apple pie. Very good! Thanks for linking to the recipe!