14 quarts tomatoes
3 large onions or 6 medium
1 stalk celery with leaves
Italian seasoning (dried)
1 cup flour
1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons pepper
Salt to taste
Finely dice the onions and celery. Boil in a small amount of water until tender. Don’t drain. Cut up tomatoes with the skins on. Combine tomatoes with the onion and celery stock. Add Italian seasoning to taste. Simmer until the tomatoes are mushy. Use an immersion blender and blend until smooth.
Push the cooked mixture though a fine-mesh strainer, using a rubber spatula, into the cone-type colander. Using the wooden pestle in the colander, push the mixture into a stock pot. Do this in small batches until all of it has been strained through both strainers.
Return the soup to the stove and start to heat it up again on medium/medium-high heat. Mix melted butter and flour into a paste, and thin it with a little bit of the soup. When it boils, whisk flour/butter mixture in slowly until all is incorporated. Stir constantly to keep from scorching. Add in the sugar, pepper and salt. Keep stirring. When the sugar, salt and pepper are mixed in, fill warmed jars.
Fill jars and add 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice to each pint or 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice to each quart.
Process 45 minutes, hot water bath. Yields approximately 22 pints.
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