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Olmo Giovanni gravatar image

Hi Lanre,

Using plastic jars is problematic due to potential chemical leaching when hot tomatoes sauce is included, as well as the sterilization options available as you cannot simply boil the jars for disinfection.

Home made tomato canning is a long standing Italian tradition, but requires canning glass jars (reusable) which require specific lids (disposable). Below are three tutorial videos in English that show two basic processing techniques for canning tomatoes at household level.

Basic Processing Warm Bath Method Pressure Canning Method

Alternatively, drying is a low cost technique that can either be done using sun, oven, or dehydrators. In Syria, UNDP is promoting sun drying of vegetables to preserve food and create livelihoods, and all they use is hanging line in full day exposed rooftops. Using a sun dehydrator would be better, though, as it prevents potential contamination of dried food.

Below you can find a guide to fruit and vegetable drying

There are many solar driers designs and dimensions, from very simple to more complex, from home sized to large scale.

Here you can find a good review of available techniques

The easiest instructions on how to build a good solar drier I found are from

Additional resources can be found at the National Center for Home Food Preservation of the University of Georgia

The FAO Guide for quality assurance of food processing for small scale rural food industries includes some instructions about drying in the spice and herbs section

The FAO Grain Storage Guide also includes a full chapter reviewing drying options