I've been wanting to make bruschetta in a jar from the first time I spied the recipe in the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. How convenient to be able to quickly broil up a batch of crostini, grab a jar of bruschetta and voila!
A big part of canning is knowing what you eat throughout the year. Planning is E V E R Y T H I N G! And (as Oprah would say) what I know for sure…is that I am an appetizer girl! When I was little our mothers used to take my friend and me out to dinner. We'd go to this restaurant called the Magic Pan, famed for its crepes, but we'd make a dinner from appetizers and shirley temples. They had these amazing little chewy, cheese fritters to dip into a mustard sauce. And cheesy garlic bread. How I love cheese.
And how I miss the Magic Pan. Boo hoo.
Bruschetta is a comforting, healthy appetizer. There's something about warm bread, and cool tomatoes that just makes my taste buds do a little jig. I love serving it to guests when tomatoes and basil are in season, or to bring to a potluck.
With bruschetta in a jar, I can bring the fresh taste of tomatoes to parties all year long! I finally got the chance to make this delightful little recipe thanks to some final tomatoes from my CSA. I've modified the recipe to suite my taste.
This recipe calls for 9 cups of chopped tomatoes which I was able to get from 3 pounds of roma tomatoes. If you use a less meaty tomato, you'll require more.
Bruschetta in a Jar
(makes seven 8-ounce jars of bruschetta)
9 cups chopped, cored tomatoes
1 1/4 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
2 TBSP granulated sugar
3 TBSP dried basil
1 TBSP dried oregano
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
Prepare canner, jars and lids.
In a stainless steel saucepan, combine all ingredients except for tomatoes. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to simmer, cover and boil gently for 5 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat.
Pack tomatoes in jar leaving 1/2 inch head space.
Note that when you first add tomatoes into the jars, you might feel as though you have a plethora of chopped tomatoes left over. You might even be tempted to fill another two jars. DON'T! You have obviously not packed your tomatoes into those jars, my friend! Take a spoon and push them down into the jar real good. Then add more tomatoes. Push on them again, until you've packed them nice and tight, remembering to leave that 1/2 inch head space. Now, you might have a few straggler tomatoes left, but certainly not a jar's worth.
If you don't really pack them in, what you'll get is a bunch of chopped tomatoes floating in a jar, and one to two inches of vinegar mixture at bottom. They'll be fine, but certainly not enough bruschetta for an appetizer plate.
Using your funnel, carefully ladle small amounts of vinegar mixture into your jars. Careful, because you've packed them nice and tight. So the liquid is not easily going to fill the jar and you don't want it to spill out.
You want to pour a small amount of the mixture into the jar, then run a butter knife along the side of the jar to allow some of the liquid to seep in further. Add a bit more of the mixture until it's filled the jar and just covers the tomatoes.
Now everything is looking lovely. You might have quite a bit of the vinegar mixture left over, which is fine. But be sure and get the garlic into the jars. Nothing is worse than a garlic gone to waste.
Process in a canner bath for 20 minutes at sea level, more depending on altitude or larger size of jar. When I refer to processing the jars in the canner bath for a period of time, what I mean is that you need to ensure the jars are covered with at least an inch of water over the tops of the jars. Let them reach a full rolling boil, then begin counting your 20 minutes.
Remove canner lid and let jars rest for 5 minutes before removing from the water. Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them.
Cool jars overnight. Once the jars have cooled, ensure they are sealed. Press down gently in the center of the lid. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. Put the jar in the refrigerator and enjoy it for the next 3 – 4 weeks. If the lid remains taut, you've got a good seal.
When you're ready to use your bruschetta, take a baguette and cut 1/2 inch thick slices, on the diagonal, and either broil quickly or bake for 4-5 minutes in a 400 degree pre-heated oven. Top each baguette slice with a spoonful of the bruschetta and drizzle with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.