Gifts Wrapped in Glass: Day 1

Welcome to Gifts Wrapped in Glass! I have been dreaming up all sorts of fun ways to use your Mason Jars as gifts, I can’t wait to share them all with you!
During the Great Depression, giving gifts in Mason Jars was very common. People would bring home canned goods as house warming gifts, birthday presents, baby presents, you name it. It’s such a practical thing! Not only can you re-use the jar, but you get to enjoy what’s inside as well! 
I came across this great recipe a while back for Homemade Ketchup over on Southern It sounded so good I couldn’t wait to try it. What a novel idea! I immediately put it on my list of gifts because I have several relatives who can’t eat commercially produced Ketchup because it contains corn syrup or other chemical allergens.
That and I am still drowning in tomatoes from the garden. This is a great way to use them up!  This is my version, here’s what you’ll need:
12 lbs. fresh tomatoes, cored and chopped
1 cup finely chopped onion
1 cup chopped roasted peppers (roast them under the broiler for a few minutes)
3 cloves Crushed garlic
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons pickling salt
1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons celery seed
2 teaspoons whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces
1/2 teaspoon all spice
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Cheese cloth, funnel, canning pot with rack, 6 1/2 pint Mason Jars with lids and bands

Roast the peppers for about 5 minutes under the broiler until charred. Core and chop peppers and tomatoes. Chop onion in the food processor. Add the spices (all except pepper flakes) and garlic to the cheese cloth, tie ends together. Bring vinegar to a boil in medium sauce pan, add cheese cloth bag. Bring to a boil for 25 minutes, then let cool. Remove bag and discard.
Meanwhile in a large stock pot, combine tomatoes, onion, peppers and cayenne. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add vinegar solution, cook for an additional 30 minutes.
Process tomato mixture through a food mill or puree in a blender. Return to stock pot and cook on low for an additional 1 1/2 to 2 hours until thick.
Fill jars, releasing any trapped air with a plastic spatula. Wipe threads clean, process in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes.
You won’t believe how wonderful this stuff smells. It does take some time to cook, but it’s easy to whip up a batch and let it simmer while you are watching the football game. Beware, it will make you hungry. I must say now that I have tasted Homemade Ketchup, I will never eat the other stuff again. There is just no comparison.
To complete the gift, I cut some craft paper to fit over the sealed lid, and slid it underneath the band. I visited the Graphic Fairy and borrowed a bee graphic to make labels for the jars. I used my Label Making Method to create the DSS stickers. I guess I should go back and add the “Homemade Ketchup” wording to it as well. 
Then I added some rustic twine instead of a bow. Gift #1 completed! Yipee!
Tune in tomorrow for more Gifts Wrapped in Glass!

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