Giveaway: Roma by Weston Electric Tomato Strainer and Sauce Maker

assembled tomato strainer

For years now, the bulk of my tomato canning has been in the form of the whole peeled tomato. It’s quick to prep, is hugely versatile, and always felt like the best use of my time. I’d make a few jars of basic puree each season, but I never found as easy a groove with sauce. However, a new appliance has come into my life that has made me rethink my preserved tomato allegiances.

sauce shute

This year, I’ve been a puree making machine thanks to the Roma by Weston Electric Tomato Strainer. It operates much like the hand crank tomato presses (one of which I’ve had for years, but never managed to fit it comfortably into my work flow), only instead of using your own brute force, the 200 watt motor gets things moving.

tomato strainer warning

It’s always important to be careful when using electric appliances that press and grind.

You cut your tomatoes into manageable bits and then pile them into the hopper. Using a tamper, you press them into the machine’s shaft, where they meet the auger, which pushes them through a screen (it comes with three different sizes, so you can also use it for fruit sauces).

The tomato pulp then comes pouring down the chute and the skin and seeds are ejected out the end of the screen. It’s incredibly effective and makes it possible to do things like break 20 pounds of tomatoes down into pulp in just 15 minutes.Β Once the tomatoes have been milled, you can cook them down into sauce or take them further into pasteΒ or conserva.

tomato strainer in the kitchen

One thing I particularly like about making sauce with a strainer is that the tomatoes go in raw and then you cook down the resulting puree. So often, sauce recipes have you simmer your tomatoes to soften, then press them through a food mill and then return them to the pot.

It’s a good technique (and one that I advocate in my cookbook), except that if you take too long in milling your tomatoes and they cool down considerably, you risk ending up with sauce that separates (more on separation, fruit float, and liquid loss here). It’s not the end of the world if it separates (just give it a good shake to reintegrate), but it sure does look prettier when your finished product is uniformly integrated.

working tomato strainer

The only issue I have with this tomato strainer is that motor portion is a little too light. It means that as you’re pressing the tomatoes into the shaft, you need to rest your elbow on the top of the motor to keep it stable. Otherwise, you’re liable to flip the machine.

It’s not hard to hold it in place once you realize that it’s necessary, but a metal body would have given it a little more weight and heft. But metal is heavier and more costly, so I understand why it’s been made as it is.

finished jars of sauce

I got this tomato strainer from the nice folks at Weston Products. They’re a company devoted to tools for those of us who like to make our food from scratch and carry an extensive collection of food mills, pasta makers, dehydrators, and sausage makers. Want to press your own wine or cider? They’ve got you covered. Because they’re awesome, they’ve given me a second Roma by Weston Electric Tomato StrainerΒ to give away to one lucky Food in Jars reader. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me your favorite canning helper (animal, vegetable, or mineral).
  2. Comments will close at 5 pm east coast time on Sunday, September 8, 2013. Winners will be chosen at random (using random.org) and will be posted to the blog later that day.
  3. Giveaway is open to US residents.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left on the blog, I cannot accept submissions via email.
Disclosure: Weston Products gave me a tomato strainer for review and photography purposes and are also providing the unit for giveaway. No money changed hands and all opinions expresses are exclusively mine.Β 

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1,253 responses to “Giveaway: Roma by Weston Electric Tomato Strainer and Sauce Maker”

  1. My favorite canning helper is my plastic green canning funnel from Goodwill. It’s the cheapest piece of crap, but it’s wider than other funnels, even my fancy stainless one with the screen insert, so it’s in almost exclusive rotation.

  2. My favorite canning helper is a very old coffee mug that my grandmother used that actually hangs on the side of my pan on the stove. It works so much better than a ladle and since I can hang it to the inside of the pan it is less messy.

  3. Ooooooh! Bringing in ten to thirty pounds of ‘maters a day from the garden lately, I can sure use me one of those puppies! My favorite canning helper? My jar lifters—I couldn’t do anything without them!

  4. My favorite helper is my 5 year old son. He loves to work in the kitchen with me and I’m hoping that interest sticks for the long run.

  5. My favorite canning helper is my grandmother! Even though she’s been gone for years, her voice telling me why we do certain things a certain way still rings in my head when I’m canning!

  6. My favorite canning helper is the new ceiling fan we installed in the kitchen (living in FL it’s a must for hours in the kitchen!!).

  7. my favorite canning helper is probably my stick blender and my wide mouth funnel. I find I use my wide mouth funnel all the time even when I am not canning!

  8. I’m pretty new to canning, so I haven’t acquired a lot of fancy equipment, so my favorite helper right now is my jar lifter, but I would love to win this prize – I could do so much with it. Thanks for the opportunity!

  9. Until recently, I was lifting jar lids with tongs. Now I have a magnetic lid lifter and I love it. But with that said, I couldn’t can without my funnel or my jar lifter. So I guess I have 3 favorite helpers. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  10. My favorite helper is my husband’s brewpot. He bought it for brewing beer but it quickly became my canning pot because it was larger than the pot I used to can with.

  11. My favorite helper is the sani-rinse cycle on my dishwasher, never had it on my other dishwashers. Getting jars and rings clean and hot is so much easier now.

  12. My mom-she was a canning fanatic til she is no longer able to do it. Last year she called me and said get over here and learn how to can, your Nana taught me, Grandma Kay taught her and someone needs to keep passing this on. So here I am. I really could use this, I’m flooded with tomatoes right now, making salsa, vegetable juice and more!

  13. This looks great! My favorite canning helper is my iPad to watch movies, listen to the news, and otherwise keep me entertained during all that chopping and stirring and cleaning.

  14. My favorite canning helper…has to be the pressure canner that my grandma left to me…25 years later and she’s still going strong! I’ll be forever grateful for all the things grandma taught me!

  15. This strainer would be my best friend/helper! I think what helps me the most is vinegar.. since I have such hard water.. it keeps my jars clean.

  16. My favorite helper is my husband… I get him to do some of the milling- I just got my food mill for Christmas last year and love it… however, I think I’d love this even more!

  17. My favorite canning helper are caregivers for my grandchildren. The way my current apartment is set up I have to carry hot jars &/or water across the kitchen. I’m always afraid the younglings will get hurt so childcare is a big relief!

  18. Oh my, everyone has told my favorite canning helpers. Good tools are a must. I love my food processor to help with the hot peppers and onions when making salsa.

  19. I have a little cat that we renamed “Garden Gabba” because he is with me in the garden every time I am out there and he just gabs and gabs and gabs the whole while. Hehehehe…I don’t know what I’d do without that little garden helper!!!

  20. My favorite canning helper is my set of good knives. It makes the chore of chopping all the yummy stuff that much easier! Plus I get nicely uniform results which makes the end product look prettier in its jar!

  21. I think that my outdoor bbq gas burners are the best helper I have. I can get 3 large kettles on there to do just about any project. I have a apple tree that just keeps on giving and apple sauce is my grandkids favorite. I get the whole family together and assembly line the whole process….. Nothing like home canned goods during the winter months!

  22. My favorite canning helper is my slow cooker! I use it to cook down sauces and fruit butters before canning – so much better than the splattery mess on the stove!

  23. Favorite helper? the farmers markets in Chicago! My little north-facing covered porch could never grow all the things I love to eat during the summer, and it’s too far of a drive to get to the farms that do–so to the market I will happily go.

  24. My favorite canning helper is my teacup pig, Silly. She desperately hopes I drop a tasty nugget on the ground. In the meantime she sucks on my feet and oinks at me to remind me she is helping.

  25. My favorite canning helper is my yellow lab Comet; he licks my floor clean of all the veggie debris I drop! And my funnel to fill the jars of course!

  26. This looks like a wonderful help! I’d love to try it. My favorite helper is my daughter, Lilli, who is begrudgingly learning to can, just like I did at her age. My other favorite helpers are wine ( to flavor and drink while canning!) and saffron. I love them in everything.

  27. Man, this would have come in handy this weekend! I’m almost done with tomatoes for the year, but I’m still thinking that I’d like to put up some marinara. My favorite canning helper is the humble magnetic lid lifter. I keep it on my metal range hood all the time, it’s just so useful.

  28. I love canning and this would sure cut down on some work and time when processing tomatoes. My favorite, It may sound funny but my favorite helper is a good sharp knife. I hate dull knives! But I need everything from pans to bowls to canners to jars and everything in between to get the job done.

  29. My favorite canning helper is a mandolin to help quickly cut cuke & zukes into coin size slices for pickles. Also does a great job with onions for B&B pickles, and helps make a mean ratatouille with zukes, peppers, onions, eggplant, tomato sauce (homemade, of course!)

  30. My 5 year old grandson helped pack apricots in jars for canning. His small hands could really get in there and pack them down. He had fun doing it. He also likes to turn the crank on the meat grinder when I grind pork for sausage making. He likes helping grandma and I love having him help.

  31. My fav helpers are my MLB/NFL teams keeping me company while I can my way through September! A bottle of wine helps also πŸ˜‰

  32. My favorite canning helper is my husband. I do most of the prepping and then he’ll help when it comes time to put everything in jars, wiping rims, putting lids and rings on and getting them in the boiling water. I always think I can do it myself, but sometimes it is nice to have more hands.

  33. My husband and I were just discussing how everyone in Italy seems to have a machine like this and that we need one. We have tomatoes coming out of our ears and we want to make them into sauce to can. These machines are genius.

    My favorite canning helper is my jar lifter.

  34. I would love this! My favorite part of canning is being able to put up all the homegrown organic veggies and fruit that I grow on my farm. I also use my Ninja blender a lot but this would be a great addition to my kitchen tools

  35. My friend Chris who hosts Canningpalooza every Labor Day. We process anywhere from 125 to 225 pounds of tomatoes over a two day period in her kitchen. We use a hand crank food mill – that is my husband’s job. This would make him a lot less cranky, so to speak.

  36. My favorite canning helper would probably be my apple peeler/corer/slicer/thingymajig. Not only does it speed things up in the apple department, but it is really fun to watch the peel come off in one continuous ribbon…

  37. My favorite and most useful tool during canning season is my thirteen year old daughter. She loves to help and I love that she is learning an art that most people no longer practice.

  38. Have to say Grace Potter and the Nocturnals is my favorite canning helper. Nothing like some good female soul music in the kitchen to get in the groove.

  39. This is a toughie! But I will say my terry cloth cotton gloves. I slip one on and alternate the fingers to help wipe around the jar rims without making a mess. Easy to clean, super absorbent, and when one is dirty I can slip the other one on! Or I rinse my hand, glove on, under hot water and get back to it!

    Also, my Aunt JoAnn. She is a produce prep machine!

  40. My whole family jarred for years, my mother loved to do it but is no longer with us. My husband has since taken over and he loves doing it. I would love to win this as it would make things so much easier for him. He even cleans up the mess he makes so I don’t have too :)…I would love to win this for him πŸ™‚ Thanks so much for the opportunity.

  41. My food processor with slicing blade is my best friend when making sweet & spicy pickled peppers and onions. Otherwise, I’d spend hours with the mandolin and I’d probably put my fingertips in danger. The Vitamix comes in second place when making jalapeno jam – it’s way easier than candied jalapenos but tastes the same. I basically blend the peppers, vinegar and sugar and then bring it to a boil in a pot.

  42. My daughter, Corinne! She only visits once a year or less now that the is expecting. It is so fun teaching her new cooking techniques and recipes. She has started to can and sell her jams! She lives 2200 miles away so now we cook and can together on skype! The next best thing!

  43. I actually prefer canning alone – so much going on that I get stressed out when there are other people around. But I recently got 2 things that make canning SO MUCH easier: a dishwasher and one of those metal lid-wands. Ahhh..

  44. This would be a great help to work over the tomatoes we have my best helper is my wife and favorite tool we use is jar lifter and food mill this looks sweet!!!!!!!

  45. Generous giveaway. My favorite helper would have to be the tv. I can’t always get my canning done when my son is sleeping so sometimes Dora is my helper.

  46. My husbands aunts and cousin have become my favorite canning helpers. My grandma used to do it but passed away several years ago, now that I am learning they have become my go tos

  47. My favorite canning helper is my two labs. No matter what I am canning they are lying in the middle of the kitchen floor hoping that I might drop or spill something. And when I do, they are there to clean up any mess that I may make. It just wouldn’t be canning without them.

  48. My husband is my favorite helper. When I can I like to do large quantities to make my effort and time worth it. And I learned something new, I always softened my tomatoes and then ran them through my strainer, I’ve never put in raw tomatoes.

  49. I think my favorite canning helper is our dog, Sunny. He enthusiastically licks up all the mess my droppy-hands seem to make on the floor whenever I can. πŸ™‚

  50. My favorite kitchen gadget right now is the automatic jam maker. Makes just the right amount so as not to feel overwhelmed and not to overtax time.

  51. My favorite canning helper would be my cat, though not quite sanitary, he loves to lie next to my feet when I’m in the kitchen for a while, it’s so sweet!
    I, like you, don’t process tomatoes for canning due to the amount of work needed.. but THIS tool looks revolutionary! Great giveaway!

  52. An electric tomato strainer would be fabulous! I am currently using a manual food mill/strainer and it does make the sauce a good consistency, but time consuming — it is my favorite for making tomato sauce though!

  53. I was going to say my Victorio is my favorite helper, but it wasn’t cooperating the other day. We were dreaming that an electric version would have been super helpful. I had no idea something even existed. So cool! What a great giveaway!

  54. I think my favorite cannin helper would be my Husband but when he is not here I would say my immersion blender, perfect for blending everything.

  55. My favorite helper is my 7 yr old grandson. He loves learning all about canning and helps from picking the garden to helping me can. This tool would be great when we can tomatoes.

  56. With the tomatoes growing in my back yard, this would be super handy! My favorite canning helper is my stick blender – so handy for getting a smooth texture. My second favorite “helper” is our puppy Atticus who likes to be very involved with everything.

  57. My new favorite canning helper is my soft-skin fruit/vegetable peeler. I peeled, cut, and seeded 25 pounds of peaches in 45 minutes with the peeler when it took me an hour and a half to do the process of dip in hot water, place in cool water, the skin didn’t “slip off” and still had to peel, then the peaches were squishy because they had been in the water, etc….

  58. My favorite is my Nexus tablet. It doubles as a recipe saver/display and a music player with the addition of an ihome speaker

    I also have a question. Is this item able to do handle veggies and fruits? Or a one-trick pony??

  59. The BEST helper is definitely the food processor! Made pickles last weekend and conquered a mountain of cucumbers in less than 10 minutes. Would have taken an eternity to cut by hand.

  60. favorite canning supply? funnel for filling jars. but really every time i get a new piece of equipment, i find it makes the process a bit more straightforward.

  61. I have been canning these last few weeks with my youngest son – he’s six weeks old tomorrow! For prep and things not near heat, he’s spent a lot of time in the carrier keeping me company. So, I’d say he’s my favorite helper this season. That press looks awesome! I just bought a berry press attachment for my bosch mixer and I’m hoping it will crush the tomatoes nicely, but yours sure looks perfect!

  62. My favorite helper is all of the pampered chef products – I am not a demonstrator but every time people can with me they realize how much of it works in my canning routine!

  63. My favorite helper is a small rubber spatula that I got at Target as part of a set if three. It’s one piece , no seams or crevices, so no places for food to hide and become a source of contamination.
    BTW, I tried some of the links to see the company’s canning tools and not all of them work–they go to your site instead, resulting in an error message.

  64. I use a Vittorio Strainer — which actually looks a little like this, but has to be attached to a counter to work. I LOVE that this doesn’t need that. ** WANT **

  65. oh my! I want this to be my favorite canning helper. Otherwise I am going to have to say your blog. (yes that was a little bit of sucking up but only in the most honest way)

  66. haha! I wish I had a canning helper, but it’s usually me, myself, and I. Sometimes, my mom and I will work together. I’m lucky when that happens!

  67. I would say my favorite helper is my sisters daughter-in-law, we have a new bond as of this canning season. To my sister… ha, ha!!!

  68. My favorite canning helper is my rescue Boston Terrier, Pilsner, who likes to lounge on the kitchen floor, underfoot, waiting to snag anything that falls into his territory.

  69. At the moment? I’d have to say the minions. My husband often helps minion (and really helped with the tomatoes this year) and my 7 year old has recently demonstrated a shocking (to me) interest in and ability to peel peaches using a peeler. I’m hoping the interest doesn’t wane.

  70. My favorite canning helper? A rollaway cart that gives me extra counter space and a handy place to keep implements, extra potholders and towels etc in my small kitchen.

  71. My favorite helper with canning is my couch and how good it feels when I’m all done and can put my feet up and have a great feeling of accomplishment.

  72. I would love to have this my husband and I just canned 146 quarts of tomatoes this past weekend, this would have speeded things up tremendously !

  73. Wow, I thought I was styling when I got a lid lifter. Then, I got a book…Food in Jars. Holy COW! I’ve been on top of the world. You had to show me this? You had to do it? I’m in love. Oh. Dear. Odds are my b.p. settle will back to normal…but will I now feel like a canning conqueror without a Roma?

  74. I love this and am relatively sure this would become my favorite canning tool. In the meantime, it has to be my iPod. Just put in the earbuds, hunker down, and get in the zone.

  75. My favorite canning helper(s) would have to be my four children. They love to giggle and crank apples in the apple peeler for me, they love putting (carefully) dill seeds and peppercorns in jars for pickles, they love pouring sugar into a pot full of fruit, and they love, love, LOVE, to eat the leftover fruit at the bottom of the pots after everything else has been preserved. They love to do all this, and I love to watch their sweet smiling faces.

  76. My fifteen-year-old son is becoming an old pro at helping me out at canning. I think I’ve done over 300 pounds of tomatoes this year so far, all on an old Foley Food Mill. Sure would like to try that one!

  77. Weird but I really find my jar lifters are the greatest thing. I’m not sure what I did before them. I was at a friends house and we did wild plum jam without them and it was a p.i.t.a.

  78. My favorite helpers are my dog who prefers to lay on my feet while I am trying to can and my husband who helps me get the jars ready.

  79. Favorite helper…my 5 yr old daughter. She gets to fill and run the Cuisinart, blender, etc and helps to fill the jars and tells me how beautiful the filled jars are when they are done. Makes it all worthwhile.

  80. My favorite canning helper is the jar lifter…much easier and safer than trying to take the jars out of the pot with my hands!

  81. My favorite canning helper is my heavy bottom, 20 quart pot. You know, for cooking down tomatoes before running them through a food mill! πŸ™‚

  82. My favorite canning helper is an apron with a picture of former president Jimmy Carter. Cheers to a man who both models diplomacy and keeps stains off my sweaters.

  83. My favorite canning helper is my daughter. My grandmother taught me how to can when I was little. My mother passed away before she could teach my daughter, so I am now teaching my daughter how to use a pressure canner. (outside of course) I remember what happened when my grandmother was teaching me and it blew its lid. Strawberry jam everywhere and a hole in the ceiling. lol

  84. My favorite canning helper is mineral…a large stainless steel stock pot I bought at a thrift store for $2. Felt lucky to find it, even luckier to use it for water bath caning small jars and cooking sauces before bottling! I don’t have a strainer but hope that changes!

  85. My favorite canning helper has to be my husband. He always comes into the kitchen to help peel or pit fruit. Usually without being asked!

  86. My favorite canning helper is my electric tea pot! It’s so much faster than using the stove – which is usually full of canners and pots anyway!

  87. Gosh, I wish I would have had this for the 175lbs of tomatoes we processed last week!

    My canning partner in crime is my best friend Becky – canning has given us an incredible focus to come together, share a glass (or two) of wine and be productive with our harvest. We even have a secret canning handshake; it’s pretty legit. πŸ™‚ Love your blog, use it all the time!

  88. My favorite canning helper is my amazing husband! He has stuck it out with me through thick & thin, him being 10 years younger than me & me getting diagnosed with a rare disease 3 months after our wedding day. To stay healthy I have to grow my own organic alkalizing foods & preserve them. He is there with me every time helping with the whole process!

  89. I just learned how to can this year. So far my favorite helper is the wonderful lady from church who taught me. I also love my jar grabber and lid wand!!! My new labels are pretty neat too!!

  90. My favorite canning helper, besides my husband who does the lions share of the work, is our neighbor Noah. He loves to go to each plant and show us the tomatoes that are “done” and can be added to the sauce. Thanks Noah!

  91. I just purchased a Progressive canning scoop from Amazon and love it. It’s big enough to almost fill a half pint jar and it has a clip that hooks onto your pot so you don’t have to make a mess on the stove or counter when you put your spoon down.

  92. My favorite helper is my husband. He always appears to help clean up (lick spoons) and wash dishes (lick pots and pans). He is a great taste tester too!

  93. I have several favorites, my new cherry pitter that pits 6 cherries at once, my Hubby the taste tester and my 3 red-headed Grandgirlies who I hope someday will carry on all the great canning and preserving traditions. I know they love to eat all that goodness πŸ™‚

  94. my favorite helper is my sister. She became interested in canning about a decade before me. She just gave me a jar of peach fig jelly.

  95. Oh my. I lust after that machine. Currently my best helper is my gigantic roasting pan (thanks, mom!) in which I cook down tons of tomatoes so they have nice roasty flavor and a lot less liquid.

  96. Ooh. Usually I don’t go for electric gizmo’s – I prefer manual/hand crank machines. But THIS is awesome. Using a handle held food mill for processing tomatoes is a pain in the neck – I’d make an exception for this bad boy.

    My favorite helper is my big long metal spoon with a hook at the end. I found it outside at my in-laws vacation property in the woods. I was digging around in a pile of junk that the previous owners had left behind and dug this out. It was very old, rusty and sad but I knew I could save it. It took some elbow grease and a few days soaking in vinegar but the rust came completely off. I oiled it up and it looks great. It’s really long, so I can stir the all the way down at the bottom of my biggest pots – and the hook on the end has been pretty handy too, for those times when you drop a utensil to the bottom of a big pot πŸ™‚ I use it for everything

  97. My favorite canning helper this season has been my been my boyfriend, he works in a restaurant part time and has been able to take all our produce in to slice/dice and bring it home all ready to go! All we have to do is give a finished jar to his manager! He also sticks around to help boil and can, love him!

  98. I just received the 4th burner pot after reading about it on your blog. I love it! I made 3 small jars of strawberry lemonade marmalade today in it!

  99. I actually love the new silicone trivets I got from amazon. They make any pot easy to can in and helps with small batches. TY for the give away!

  100. My sister! She gives me great taco relishes that she cans. My mom canned a ton and my sister has some of her great recipes.

  101. My husband. He provides that extra hand I find I need on a regular basis. Of course, a nice glass of wine within reach is always helpful, too. πŸ™‚

  102. I would have to say my canners, Old Blue for boiling water canning, and my All American pressure canner. This has been such a wonderful canning year because I now have both types of canners. So many wonderful fruits and vegetables I’ve been able to can this year. I like knowing what’s in the food I eat and serve to my family !!

  103. My favorite canning helper is my Presto 23 qt. pressure canner. I even just started using it for water bath processing.

    I’ve been doing my tomato batches with a strainer and a rubber spatula. I need this little gadget so much!!!

  104. My husband is my favorite canning helper. He slices, dices, peels, stirs, and pours for me while I’m also doing any one of the above and makes big batches much more manageable. He also help me clean up afterward!

  105. My favorite canning helper are my friends. I am just starting out and they offer so many good suggestions and encouragement.

    • I really don’t have a helper. I am more of a get out of my way and let me do it kind of person. But, my GF also cans, just at a separate time πŸ™‚ And, she is the tomato canner; so this would be a nice Christmas present for her.

    • My hubby is my canning helper. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis so he becomes my sou chef. We have a wonderful veggie garden every year so hubby and good gadgets and tools become my go to!

  106. The 4th burner pot is probably my favorite addition to my canning tools. But, after reading this, I think this would be my new favorite helper!

  107. My favorite helper is my husband. He picks all my cucumbers and washes them too, before we soak them in ice water to make dill pickles! I make 80 some quarts a year! I also make sweet pickles and relish. He helps with all, Not to mention he planted all the seeds every year, after rototilling the ground! We always think about making something out of our tomatoes, but we never do. Probably because the task is too daunting without a beautiful machine like the Roma! I would love to have one for next years crop!! I am Italian and I should be canning my beautiful tomatoes to make my Grandmother’s spagetti sauce!

  108. My favorite canning helper is our portable propane burner….found out this summer that it works wonders for keeping the house cool when it’s too hot to can inside!

  109. My favorite canning helper is……….hmmmmm………I would have to say my husband. He almost always helps me do my canning and he even cans a lot by himself.

  110. Ah, my food mill. Wreaks havoc with my arthritis but can’t live without it! I think it’s time I made my process more automated. πŸ™‚

  111. My favorite canning helper is my chi mix named Sarg. He lays in the kitchen while I can be it 30 min. or 5 hours. Faithful, lovable and loves to talk and sing to me while I work.

  112. I live at 7,400 ft in the mountains of AZ. Growing season is very, very short. My helper is the local Farmers Market that provides me with wonderful fruits & veggies to preserve through the cold snowy winters when we can be snowed in for several days. Love you site. It is such fun to read. Thank you!

  113. Wow, this looks amazing! My favorite canning helper is my friend in Oregon. Unfortunately, I just moved to California and now I have to can all by myself. I either need to make some new canning friends, or get some nifty tools like this to help me!

  114. This machine is magical! My favorite canning helper (aside from my siblings passing through the kitchen) is my low and wide All-Clad pot. It’s magical. I couldn’t jam without it.

  115. My neighbor/ second mom is my favorite helper! We are picking tomatoes this weekend. This machine would be lovely for my spaghetti sauce and salsa!!

  116. I have only been canning for about a year with the bare minimum tools, but one thing I use all the time is a good knife and a old cutting board for cutting all the vegetables.

  117. My favorite canning helper is my good friend Joanie… We can everything together and split the rewards. Canning with a good friend makes the day full of conversation and good times; I wouldn’t want it any other way.

  118. This year, my go-to canning helpers are my dehydrator and my juicer. We use the juicer to start the tomatoes and then the hand-crank tomato press to go through the skins/seeds to get out all the pulp.

  119. I’d have to say that my favorite canning “helper” is my Dad…because he made me a ton of shelves in my basement to store all of my canned goods and my canning supplies on! πŸ™‚

  120. My favorite “helper” is my sister, Shelley, who grows a huge garden, cans everything in sight and shares some of it with her city dwelling sister. Thanks sis.

  121. My favorite canning helper is my best friend Sue! I am constantly sending her texts and pictures about the canning process and she chimes in with advice about consistency and texture, ways to avoid messes…

  122. My big burner gas stove. I can run 2 pressure canners or boilers at a time! This would be a great kitchen tool to have! Thanks

  123. My favorite canning helper this year was my 4 year old. This was his first year helping and he became an expert on tomatoes, corn and green beans. He loved to help can and freeze! We had a blast!

  124. My favorite canning “helper” is my HUGE Stainless steel stock pot that I found at a local thrift store! Doesn’t get better than that!

  125. My favorite canning helper is my dear friend Mary Jane who sticks with each project with loving attention. May we be canning partrners for many more years to come.

  126. My favorite canning helper is a warm body with willing hands to assist & keep company. It goes much faster with good company!

  127. My favourite canning helper is my immersion blender. Nothing makes pureeing jams, sauces, etc easier then an immersion blender. Though this tool would make canning sauce MUCH easier.

  128. Monday: I see my brother’s new Roma and think, “Heeeeey, that might be the food mill for me.”
    Wednesday: Food in Jars announces a Roma givaway.

    …Cool.

    Favorite canning helper? Difficult decision. It really depends on what I’m canning. My OXO cherry pitter is my favorite recent discovery, though. (I’m also fond of my immersion blender, but if I had one of these things the ranking might get rearranged some…)

  129. I haven’t canned tomato sauce yet, but it’s at the very top of my list since I use so much of it in cooking. Next year, I hope to have a nice crop to put up. As for canning helpers, I have to give the nod to my Le Creuset dutch oven. That pot keeps such a nice even temperature – no matter WHAT you’re cooking with it – that you don’t have to constantly adjust the gas on the stove. I also LOVE my funnel because it sits so securely on both regular and wide mouth jars. (One less thing for me to knock over!)

  130. Definitely the bubbler/headspace guide that came with my Ball canning set. Darned if it isn’t the most gimmicky looking thing, but I have a panic attack if I’m about to fill jars and can’t find it!

  131. OMG what a giveaway! My favorite tool? Hmm… would be that strainer. πŸ˜‰ But for now, I do love my canning pot. Nice and large.

  132. My favorite canning helper is a c1940s 30quart stainless steel pot that I got from my husband’s Grandmother. It is a dream to work with; and handles every situation. Large batches of jelly; endless tomatoes from the garden. It’s a lot bigger than my canner/processor ! I just couldn’t manage without it.

  133. I canned for the first time last year with a group of folks. I have not done so alone and would love this helper for the awesome tomatoes!

  134. You know what is so cool about this, is that if you are a seed saver (which I am), it separates them out for you. How great is that?! My favorite canning tool is my Oxo ricer masher thingee. It is awesome for making apple sauce and apple butter.

  135. My favorite canning helper is not animal, vegetable, or mineral, it’s music and specifically the Grateful Dead, I crank up a show when I start processing my veggies or fruit and the music just helps guide me through the whole way until I lovingly look upon the sealed jars.

  136. My favorite canning helper is my husband! He helped me turn 40lbs of tomatoes into sauce just this past weekend, I would’ve loved to have had this then! Thanks for the chance to win!

  137. Sarah, my next door neighbor (and friend, of course!). Wouldn’t have made it this far this summer without her canning help and garden produce contributions!

  138. My partner David. He makes sure I have the proper head-space and cleans the rims as i fill the jars. Saves me time and clean up.

  139. My 25 year old daughter. We are newbies to this canning craze; last year was our first year. What a success! She has this “we can do it attitude”, and we canned four different items and all were delicious. She grew tomatoes this year so…away we go!

  140. My favorite canning helper is my daughters. It makes me happy to pass on the joy of canning on to my daughters as my mom and grandmother did me. Which I am very grateful.
    Thank you for the opportunity to win the tomato strainer! I have been wanting one of these!

  141. I would say my favorite helper is my CSA for providing me with great veggies to can! Just started last year, but tomatoes are my favorite–the idea of not having to hand crank makes me happy!

  142. This was my first summer of canning…and boy am I hooked..so far my favorite implements are my cherry pitter and the wide mouth funnel!
    BTW…your bread and butter pickle recipe is the bomb!

  143. I love to can but just got into it 2 yrs ago! My favorite helper is my mandolin slicer! It saves me time! That tomato press looks so awesome!

  144. I have a wonderful old steam juicer that my sister in law got for me at the Goodwill used. It speeds things up considerably for apple butter, plum butter, jellies, etc… basically I use it for everything. But I have yet to can tomatoes because they just look so daunting. This lovely gadget would make it so easy!

  145. Thirs would be my partner Brain, he lectures about head space, and is a quick and efficient vegetable chopper. Second only to my dog Callie, who really does nothing, but makes for good company. First is my plastic funnel, which makes for a whole lot less sloppy jar rim cleaning.

  146. My favorite canning helper is an animal: my devoted husband, the Perfessor. He makes himself scarce during the actual act (he logically tries to dodge curse words). He reappears when I finish, magically, with cocktail shaker in hand and flowing, cooing acclamations about the lovely newly jarred condiments arrayed on the kitchen island. He loves to note the loud lid pops too. What a guy. I think I’ll keep him.

  147. My best canning helper is my three-year old daughter. She loves to pick the fruits and vegetables and also is a big help in the kitchen. Plus she always tells me how yummy everything tastes.

    I’m excited about trying tomatoes. I would love to do my own sauce, but my sauce is sweet and I have read many different posts about the need to pressure cook tomatoes and also the difficulty with canning sauce with additional ingredients – onions, garlic,sugar etc. Any words of wisdom?

  148. What an awesome giveaway! My favorite tool as of now would have to be my funnel..many messes before I invested in one of those!!

  149. I can with my Daughter, when she comes home to visit. She is a NYC Divorce Attorney and my Best Friend. Canning for both of us is rewarding, relaxing, and most of all fun~~~~It is an Ancient Art, we are both proud to carry on~~~~(And we would Love to win this~~! πŸ™‚ )

  150. My favorite canning helper is my jar lifter. This was a hard choice because my Victorio stainless steel canner is a beautiful thing.

  151. My husband is my best canning helper. He grew up helping his mother and grandmother put up food, so he knew a lot more than me. He’s always willing to assist whenever I have a surplus of tomatoes, or other fruit….I could can without him, but it wouldn’t be as much fun!

  152. Actually, my husband is my favorite canning helper. He helps me with pears, peaches, and tomatoes. It goes much faster with extra hands.

  153. I tend to use an immersion blender directly into my pot of cooking tomatoes to make sauce, but that has it’s drawbacks. It’s an invaluable tool, for sure! I’d love one of these, as we can almost 100 lbs of tomatoes yearly. Thanks for the giveaway!

  154. Favorite canning helper is definitely the magnetic lid lifter – and the bourbon on the rocks after a long day over a hot stove!

  155. I’d say a quiet house, but that doesn’t happen very often with three little ones. My pressure canner is pretty important, and my tattler lids do a whole lot for me too! This would be AMAZING!

  156. My favorite canning helpers are my children. It allows me to pass down my memories of my mother to children. They also turn out to be the best labor around. Free. Energetic. Fearless.

  157. My favorite canning aid is definitely the farmers’ market where I shop. I wound up with half-bushels of plum tomatoes two weeks in a row.

    Half-bushels of tomatoes for $15 are awesome.

  158. My favorite canning helpers–my two canner girlfriends. Many hands (with good tools in them, of course) make light work!

  159. Oh man could I use this! Last time I used my food mill to make tomato sauce I ended up with tennis elbow (ever had a cortisone shot in your elbow? ouch!!!!!), My favorite helper? Air conditioning! Makes the canning kitchen bearable on the hottest days.

  160. The phone – to call Mom for advice or just to share that what I’m doing – is my favorite canning helper. And many memories of canning tomatoes etc with her.

  161. I’d have to say currently it is my squeezo strainer……but I have to press things thro like 2-3 Times to get the pulp I desire. Would love this prize.

  162. My 3.5 y/o son is my favorite helper πŸ™‚ but other than that, it’s my garden!! Because all those juicy veggies and fruits are going right into my jars!!

  163. My favorite new canning helper is a larger canning pot. I used my stockpot but I did an all day canning event (chopped tomatoes, salsa, and marinara, all recipes from Food in Jars!) and I really needed the larger pot.

  164. Usually I do my canning on my own, but I love it when my hubby is there to be my helper. We have good talks and it makes the job get done quicker!

    Would love to be entered into your giveaway, as that would be a great help when making tomato sauce and apple sauce!

  165. My favorite helper is my jar lifter. I finally purchased one after years of trying to manipulate tongs and getting my fingers burnt! It has made the process so much more fun!

  166. Hubby will help if I ask him, but most of the time I’m working by myself. But, hubby makes the best tomato sauce after I have cleaned the tomatoes, so I will gladly process them for the delicious sauce he makes!!

  167. My favorite canning helper is whoever is willing to come into the kitchen to help when my youngest inevitably decides that he wants to nurse just as I start to fill my jars with product! Happens every time!

  168. My favorite canning helper is my magnetic lid snagger-I went for YEARS trying to get them out of the bowl with tongs! This “Roma” looks great!

    BTW. My husband and I stopped by Fillmore on the way to Roots farmer’s market last week. What a fun place and such nice ladies in the office ! So glad to have that jar source.

  169. My daughter, who is now away at her 1st year in college. Yes, she is coming home this weekend to help make (eat) tomato soup, and probably take most of what we can back with her. I was very surprised how quickly the kids moved away from Campbells & to homemade.

  170. My favorite helper is my husband Jon and my youngest son Jacob! They always do all the heavy lifting for me:) It sure makes the time go by faster with them around:)

  171. My favorite helper is my neighbor, Kim! She and I have processed upwards of 200 pounds of tomatoes so far this year, and we hope to can lots more! Also, my chickens are helpful (they LOVE the peels and seeds)…but not as helpful as Kim :-). The Roma would certainly make our lives easier/more fun!

  172. Oh my! That looks amazing. Though that would take away my excuse that the squeezo is just as good as a trip to the gym. My favorite helpers are the wonderful cookbooks I’ve started to collect. You can even enjoy them in the middle of winter as you ponder next year’s canning.

  173. My favorite canning helper of all time was my new mother-in-law, who appeared at my door the morning I started canning peaches for the very first time! She sat there and peeled enough peaches for 21 quarts, letting me take my time with all the kettle, lids, rings, jars, syrup, timer…and never said a word about how I did things unless I asked. What a treasure!

  174. My big stainless canning pot. It doubles as a giant stock pot and it’s shiny enough that I don’t have to lug it in and out of the closet, I just leave it on the stove the whole canning season.

  175. My favorite helper(s) are my kids, and I have 13 of them!! I love to spend time with them and I especially love for them to learn these valuable lessons of home canning and provident living. A nifty unit like the Roma by Weston would sure simplify things!!

  176. My favorite canning helper is my pile of clean kitchen towels. I don’t know about you, but I go through a huge pile of them every time I can. I love to fold them in a neat little pile before i get started, I love laying them out on what I call my “sterile” area. My kids know if those towels are laid out – don’t touch!

  177. My favorite canning helper would be when either my husband or mother comes to help! After that, it would have to be wonderful set of knives that helps with just about any type of canning!!

  178. My favorite helps are my jar lifter- how many hands were burned before the advent of that thing- and my fur baby, Sadie. Nothing like a dog who loves you sooo much she has to lay down in the exact place you need to stand. Oh so helpful. πŸ™‚

    KK

  179. My Mother-in-law! She came to a canning demo with me, bought your book and just today taught me about preparing tomatoes for canning while helping make a batch of your savory apricot sage jam! Her newest favorite canning helper is the magnetic lid lifter she bought immediately following your demo.

  180. Wow! That is awesome. I thought the funnel I got last year was nifty. I’d totally make sauce every day and night with that machine.

  181. This strainer looks amazing! My favorite canning ‘helper’ is my group of vegetable growing friends who give me their excess produce! Nothing makes me happier than getting a note from someone saying ‘I have extra tomatoes. Want them?’

  182. As of late, my favorite canning helper is my dear daughter who loves to help me in the garden, picking tomatoes, and into our little kitchen to stew them. I love her to pieces, and love having her by my side.

  183. My favorite canning helper (that I don’t have!) would be air conditioning. Cooking down and canning so many jars of food in a 100 degree kitchen is no fun.

  184. My favorite canning helpers were my daughters who “loved” to turn the handle of the Victorio hand cranked tomato squisher. Now that they have grown up and moved away, I need the motorized Weston version.

  185. My favorite canning helper is my daughter who has taken the time to make sure what we can for our family is done correctly and safely.

  186. My dog Thor! Why? Because he keeps me company while I’m canning, though he does have the habit of laying behind me while I work.

  187. My favorite canning helper is my husband! We find that the teamwork really makes the whole process more enjoyable. We both agree this machine would be an excellent helper, as putting up all the heaps of tomatoes can be quite a task.

  188. I think the best canning helpers I have are good knives-absolutely essential. That looks like quite a machine. Thanks for the give away!

  189. I’m new to canning, but so far, my favorite canning helper is the magnetic lid lifter. I got into canning so I could make tomato sauce so this giveaway will be quite useful!

  190. I love my half sheet pans. I put clean towels on them and have one for the hot jars for filling and then a new one when they come out of processing. They make it easy to transport the jars. Thanks!

  191. My favorite canning helper is my husband. He’s always right by my side during the canning process and the eating process.

  192. My favorite (or most helpful) canning helper is the double layer pressure canner. I, absolutely, love it. While, it will only hold the same number of quarts as smaller canners, it will hold a second layer of pints. This allows me to eliminate half the “wait time” – remember to include the length of time for the pressure to reduce. That may not be important for some projects, but it absolutely helped when I was canning more than a hundred jars of green beans.

    I think this tomato strainer would be equally as time saving – particularly as I’ve been using a Foley Food Mill.

  193. My favorite tool, especially when canning tomato sauce and apple sauce,
    is a device called a”Squeezo”. I bought it over 30
    Years ago. It is essentially a manual version of this slick
    Looking Electrical strainer.

  194. My favorite canning helper is cheesecloth! I use it to strain the amazing beach plums that I pick late summer that grow by the ocean on Long Island. Nothing like good old fashioned beach plum jelly!

  195. Jar lifters and silicone half-gloves are my favorites. The half-gloves help me lift larger jars from the canner in the frame provided. Jar lifters are just overall good for every jar. –djs

  196. My cat, Torticia. She sits faithfully on the island watching over the entire production. Actually, if I don’t keep an eye on her, she’ll sit faithfully IN my box of tomatoes. I just started canning this year, but I’ve canned over 100 lbs of tomatoes so far, so if I win the tomato strainer, it might come close to taking Torticia’s place as my favorite canning helper.

  197. My favorite canning helper my fresh herb garden. Dill for pickles, cilantro for salsas, basil for sauces…possibilities are endless!

  198. i know lots of folks have already said this, but it’s probably because they are so indispensable…my loving husband does so much to help me put up food for our family to enjoy through the long winter.

  199. My twins are almost 5 and I would have to say they are my biggest helplers in the kitchen. I can count on them to help prep all my canning projects. The classic “Mom, whatcha doing” is music to my ears! I love that they are interested in what I’m doing. Canning has become a dying art and I’m so happy to pass what I know on to them. My Grandma would be proud!

  200. That would NOT be my children tugging at my legs the whole time, or the extreme heat here in LA. Perhaps my collection of canning books which always bring me inspiration.

  201. Could have used this over the last month as I put up 33 quarts (and counting) of puree. Actually, I currently cheat and use my kitchen go-to tool, a food processor and don’t skin or seed, so this tool would definitely make me more legit!

  202. The first pot I used for water bath, when I started canning this yr. I found in our metal shop, half full of rusty nails. It was the only pot I found that could accommodate the 8oz jars for the peak of blackberry season was just kicking off. When hubby surprised me with the 21qt stainless steel Ball pot, I couldn’t bear to part with “Rusty Nails”

  203. my favorite helper is packaged pectin. While I’d love to experiment more with recipes that rely on the fruit to provide the pectin, my attempts have edible results much more often with packaged pectin.

  204. I love the new tools Ball has put out; magnet, sizer/bubble out tool (lol), jar gripper and funnel. They are so much better than the old tongs and other household items one might have.

  205. My favorite canning tool is my grandmother’s old funnel..which her mother used. I use it while canning with mt favorite girlfriends Ricki and Kathy. It’s a fall tradition we’ve been doing for over 10 years.

  206. My favorite helper is my immersion blender. When I want to get a nice pureed jam or sauce I just stick that sucker in the pot and give it a little whirl! I don’t usually puree the whole batch, just a bit to give a nice thickness to things. (and yes, I am VERY careful with it to avoid hot lava splatter!)

  207. My favorite canning helper is my pair of soft soled Birkenstocks… they keep my feet from getting sore during a marathon kitchen session!

  208. My family! When I see them enjoy all the delicious, nutritious, home-grown, home-canned foods, it makes all the hard work worth it! Yummy!

  209. I use my husband’s grandmother’s hand crank food grinder when making pepper jelly with bell peppers and jalapeno peppers. Also love it for ‘raw’ cranberry and orange relish at Thanksgiving. YUM!

  210. My favorite canning helper is my manual Roma food strainer. It’s totally awesome and a huge timesaver. My dog always kept me company in the kitchen until she passed away this year. Canning has not been the same without her but I dedicate all my canning to her now!!

  211. Even though it’s old and a bit clumsy, I love my grandma’s food mill – makes me think of her every time I use it! This tool would definitely speed up the sauce making process!

  212. My favorite item to use when canning is my camp stove. It provides me extra space for another canner. And since I have a flat top stove, which is not recommended for canning, the camp stove gives me exactly the heat I need.

  213. My favourite canning tool is this blog! No seriously, I’m a beginner and have found a ton of helpful hints and recipes here. Couldn’t have done it without you!

  214. Don’t know how I’d fill my jars without the fruit funnel and a small sharp knife for coring and cutting the tomatoes using the cold pack method of tomato canning. Then having a book on tape or CD helps to keep the rhythm going on the canning process.

  215. My favorite kitchen helper for canning is my Magic Bullet. It plus a simlpe food mill helps turn a couple of pints of raspberries in to a sublime seedless jam.

    I use the jam alomst exclusively for wonderfil triffle I make for the holidays.

  216. My favorite canning helper is my mom. We have been canning jams and tomatoes like crazy for the past few weeks and this would be an awesome aid. She has bursitis in her arm so I do all the manual food milling. Ouch!

  217. My favorite canning helper is my apple peeler/corer/slicer. It is wonderful on apples, and works on pears too. This year is a good one for apples and pears, and having the peeler makes life easier

  218. My mother-in-law, who happens to live next door. Anytime I have a question about canning I can just ask her! Also, if I don’t have the right equipment over here, I can usually borrow it from her. Neither of us have a tomato strainer, though!

  219. For years my favorite canning helper was the local extension agency, who tested the gauges and seals and plugs and whatnot on my increasingly decrepit pressure canners. They were 30 years old if they were a day when I was using them – possibly older. But back then they built to last and you could still get parts for-practically-ever. That was 40 years ago.

    Now pressure canning and the associated blanching and peeling of tomatoes is a bit beyond me, but a mill to do the peel-removal for me would go along way towards getting me back on the preserving path, LOL!

  220. favorite canning helper? my GRANDMA. she may be gone, but her Chili Sauce recipe is the best and helps use up the garden tomatoes.

  221. well, I have a fairly simple selection of canning help, but I do find those several items helpful (lid magnet, jar lifter, funnel) — but I think the tomato whiz-bang would be awesome!

  222. I must have one! It isn’t my favorite, but my most useful tool is my food mill. It’s slow work, but I made (your!) amazing sauce recipe last year using it. Which I’m almost out of. πŸ™

  223. This is my first season at canning and I was tickled pink when my new Food in Jars book arrived today, I made my first batch of salsa. I’d say my jar “picker-upper” would be the best tool-that water is hot!

  224. Hornet and reuse able lids..I value my canning jars handed down from my Grandma ..the thoughts of what has been put in the jars over the years..

  225. My hubby! It’s pretty awesome having him be interested in being my kitchen helper ( even if some times I wish he wasn’t lol). I also have a serious crush on crockpot. It’s so nice to let it do all the work of breaking stuff down overnight while I get to sleep πŸ˜€

  226. I have several things that are favorites! I love the internet, for all of these great ideas. I love my cookbooks, because sometimes I just want a “book” to turn pages and contemplate all the other ideas. But, my next favorite is our move! We are going rural! I can’t wait to have a HUGE garden, with tomatoes playing center stage! Then our own chickens and many fruit trees. I have great plans for an item like this! Would love it to be one of the things that I can move with me to my next journey in canning!

  227. I’m still geeking out over the food mill I picked up at a second hand store a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t used it enough to get sick of turning the handle. πŸ™‚

  228. A few months ago, I bought one of those silicone lids that has vents so that your pot never boils over. It’ll be brilliant for canning things into quart jars that are just a bit too tall for my stock pot to safely maintain 1″ of water boiling over it without having to keep a really close on eye for it to not spill over.

  229. I don’t have room to grow anything (apartment patio doesn’t get enough sun for container gardening), so I wold have to say that my favorite canning helper is the abundance of farms and farmers’ markets in my area.

  230. I live in an area where it is difficult to grow fruit trees because of late frosts and harsh winters. This year was BANNER! My biggest helper was the wonderful folks that let me pick their fruit for some fabulous recipes that I found in the Put Em Up Canning & Preserving book!

  231. I love your blog and share it with all my friends all the time. My favorite canning helper has to be my mothers strainer that was passed down to me by her.

  232. My husband is my biggest helper. He took an interest in helping me can this year and now he’s unstoppable! He’s currently working on fermenting a batch of sauerkraut in my dining room!

  233. My favorite tool is the canning funnel that belonged to my Grandmother. Every time I use it I feel like she is right there with me…

  234. My helpers are very basic since I’m just a beginner, but the best is a correctly sized funnel. What a difference it makes in filling the jars!

  235. Paper towels! I go through a lot while canning (our washer is currently out of whack but the potential of mess while canning is no deterrent to me, lol)

  236. I’m just a beginner in canning, but I would have to say my crockpot, it does so much for saving me time. I only wish that I had all of my grammie’s canning supplies.

  237. My 10 year old son! He is very encouraging while honest in his opinions about the outcome of my kitchen experimentation. πŸ™‚

  238. My MOM! Not only is she a huge help and doesn’t mind the tedious tasks like peeling and chopping, but it’s a time that we can spend together. Here help is priceless!

  239. Oh there are so many things that help me can. Probably the most useful is my 7 pint canning pot. I never would have said that before because it is so obvious. But I was recently invited to a friends’ house who had just picked 70 pounds of plums and needed to do something with them. They had never seen a canning pot before. They canned the old fashioned way with paraffin. If you want to get away from the obvious for that canning session at least the second most useful item was a stick blender. A good stick blender will puree not just the fruit but the skins as well so you don’t have to take the time to strain them out or peel. That saves so much time with plums.

  240. Humm.. helpers as in the kids being forced to? or a nice gadget? LOL! I would have to say my jar lifter I received from Ball a few years ago as a nice giveaway, it’s fancier than the one everyone has, it has a better grip and I don’t feel that the jar will slip through. I do have a hand crank strainer, but this exact Roma strainer has been on my dream list for quite a while yet, just haven’t been able to justify the expense!

  241. Hmmmm…my favorite canning helper – that would be my green-thumbed friends and relatives who call me when they have a bumper crop of ….anything!!!! (Of course we all know that they do it because of the little jars that will find their way home with them)

  242. My dishwasher is a very important canning tool. However, every tool that I use is for a specific purpose and I value all of them for what they do.

  243. I, too, am thankful for family members–not because they help during the process (they tend to make themselves scarce), but because they are so appreciative of my canning efforts and help empty the jars to be reused.

  244. Im new to canning and recently picked up a funnel. Wow tools really do make work simple. Now to get a magnetic lid grabber and a bigger canning pot.

  245. My favorite helpers would be my non-union workers who work for free (my kids) and they generally go on strike around the 20th lb. This give away would go a long way towards speeding up canning process.

  246. My son helps some. When i can veg. beef soup it last about a week . Then he will ask mom when are you going to make some more soup.

  247. Sheesh…not sure what my favorite canning helper is…could be the Goods Store where I can choose any variety of jars not always carried in my area and for a great price, too! Or it could be my asparagus steamer that takes the overflow of a couple jars that my stock pot can’t handle. Oh and it could be the wire cake cooling rack I just got to fit in the bottom of my stock pot to sit my jars on. That’s new this year and let me throw the old aluminum pie plate with the knife holes poked through it in the recycling bin! Or it very well could be my dog Zoey, who at nearly 16 has always watched me cook, bake and now can…I think besides being a true food hound, she has always just been a chef-wannabe.
    This would be awesome to win! I too, use mostly whole tomatoes to can, except for the one or two batches of tomato jam – not having to skin and seed makes that great!

  248. I have several favorite tools based on what I’m making. I love my immersion blender for doing a quick blend. I love my crockpot for cooking sauces slowly. And I love my food mill. Thanks for the great giveaway!

  249. Two gadgets from Pampered Chef. My Mix ‘N Chop and Cook’s Corer (old style). The corer digs out any blemishes and the Mix ‘N Chop is great for breaking up fruit or veg in pot without mashing it and keeps nice chunks when I want them.

  250. Favorite tool, hmm – They are all kind of practical. Definitely need a jar lifter. My huge scary mandolin slicer has been one of my favorite tools. I wouldn’t have wanted to do sauerkraut without it!

  251. Wow, I guess my favorite “gadget” is my apple peeler/corer/slicer. Sure comes in handy when making apple butter and pie filling and such!
    You know, I bet Weston could take a hint from the manufacturer of my food processor; it has three sturdy suction cups on the bottom that keep the unit from tipping over. Maybe that would be an inexpensive fix for the Roma, too?

  252. I have a Victorio strainer that I use to make spaghetti and tomato sauce. I couldn’t be without it but, it’s seen it’s wear over the years and it is time for something new. How awesome a motorized device would be!

  253. Picking just one favorite canning helper is tough! I do love my food mill. It helps me remove seeds from the wild dewberries we pick every late spring and make into seedless jelly.

  254. Oh man do I ever need this machine! I make puree with a hand cranked food mill. And you’re right, it’s hard to really get excited about the process. Even though I look forward to eating all of those jars later at the time I can hardly stand to look at them by the time I’m done.

    The tool I have been getting a lot of use out of this year is a stick blender. It’s awesome for anything already peeled or that can have the peels pureed in(like apples). I love that I can use it right in the big pan of cooked fruit.

  255. My mom is my biggest help! She has got the years of canning experience and expertise that I’d be lost without. Thanks for the great giveaway!

  256. Being new to canning this year I don’t have many extra helpers, but I would have to pick my food processor that allows me to chop large amounts of fruit and veggies rather quickly. Would live to add the tomato strainer to my small, but hopefully growing, list of helpers.

  257. I have borrowed from a friend her victorio strainer,I don’t have one myself. They are such a life saver!!! All the straining I have done and still don’t have all the seeds out. Oh how I wish for a strainer of my own.

  258. Honestly? My favorite canning helper(s) are my two boys, ages 4 and 6. They get so excited when we are canning things. We have made jam, salsa, pumpkin butter, tomato sauce, and tomato soup together. The two of them aren’t old enough to help with a lot, but boy does my moral and outlook improve in that 4th or 5th hour of processing when they want to “help!”

  259. Wow, it would be so helpful to have a machine like this! I love my food mill, it’s my most helpful gadget when it comes to canning, but this would be awesome to have!!

  260. Oh, man I would’ve loved to have this two weeks ago when I bought a half-bushel (for $12!). I guess my biggest helper would be podcasts to listen to while I’m working πŸ™‚

  261. Oddly enough – my favorite tool is my tongs! I miss them when I don’t have them and make an incredible mess pulling sanitized jars out of the water using the jar lifter.

  262. My new favorite canning helper is my 10 year old son! He loves chopping things up and since I have enough room, it’s nice to have an extra pair of hands for keeping my warm jars supplied and stocking the lid simmering pot and getting things in those jars! πŸ™‚ He’s pretty good company, too!

  263. I made your marinara sauce on Sunday and immediately afterwards went looking for something like this. My daughter is my best tomato helper, but she is sadly only good for deskinning whole ones, not for sauce.

  264. My favorite canning helpers are my hubby and 3 kids- it goes so much faster, and I like knowing they know where their food comes from. πŸ™‚

  265. My girls are my favorite helpers. From pushing tomatoes through the mill or peeling apples, green tomatoes and whatever else, they help me immensely!
    They unknowingly complement me by bringing our canned goods to their friends houses!

  266. I just have the basics. Love the magnetic lid wand and tongs for lifting jars, since I canned without even those for a few years!

  267. My favorite canning helper is Mr Clean Nyplex gloves, now re-branded “Bliss”. They are durable, but thin enough to give good tactile contact while providing protection. I can reach into a waterbath and retrieve broken glass, tighten rings on hot jars, or stir bubbling jam, knowing I can easily change out of the gloves to answer the phone or help a child. I have babied two pairs for a few years while these were off the market, but they are now available as “Mr Clean “Bliss” latex free reusable gloves.
    Aside from these, my “BFF” for canning is Pomona’s Universal Pectin, ultimate freedom in recipe development, especially for low-sugar or honey sweetened jams.

  268. I have so many tomatoes and just keep roasting them on the bbq grill for freezing because I can’t seem to embracing all the peeling and seeding for sauce, and my littles do not like my “lazy chunky sauce”. I would LOVE to can sauce for winter. My best helper is my stereo…music! THANK YOU for the chance to win.

  269. My husband! Although he doesn’t enjoy canning very much, he does enjoy the awesome pizza sauce, salsa, applesauce, and other goodies we enjoy the rest of the year. And so he puts up with it. πŸ™‚

  270. I think I have 2 faves, my enameled dutch oven is awesome for cooking down jams, sauces, etc. But my new fave this year is my label maker. I have horrible handwriting and hate writing out all those little lables so I remember what’s in each jar. With my Brother p touch, I type in all the info once and boom, I can print out as many labels as I like. Plus it’s small enough I can keep it in my kitchen drawere so it’s easy to use whenever I need it.

  271. My favorite helper….hm, I usually can things by myself (fun to relax and even taste test when no one’s looking!) but I really love Mason jars. My favorite thing is a line of Mason jars with different foods canned in them – how beautiful! Hoping to can tomatoes this weekend!

  272. My favorite tool is a long handled wooden spoon that belonged to my husbands grandmother it was also her preserving spoon. I love being connected to our past and when making jams the very long handle keeps me from getting splatter burns.

  273. I would say mine is my husband, he hand cranks our juicer and then we cook it all together and that bonding time is great! He’s a trooper!

  274. My favorite canning helper is my sister, but we don’t get to work together often. My next favorite is my ball water bath canner.

  275. i misplaced my canning supplies this year. (i’ve found them now) – got all my sauce done with a pair of tongs and a ladle, but it sure made me appreciate my jar lifter!

  276. My favorite canning helper is my jar lifter. It would feel impossible to safely put the jars in the water and get them out without it.

    Now . . . an electric “Victorio Strainer”??? So, so cool! I don’t have anything against my old crank model, except it leaks like crazy. It makes such a mess I hesitate to use it. AND I have only one screen for it, so I’m limited to tomatoes or very smooth applesauce. Pick me! Pick me!

  277. My fully grown son.He is married and has his own family. He is so into tomatoes that it is the only thing he planted this year. every evening after work he cans tomatoes or practices and experiments with new recipes. he has made me tomato soup, juice and sauces. I grow the organic spices and he uses them in combinations. The only canning items we have were once my mothers, so all of them are over 60 years old. But he loves it just them same. this item would be awesome.

  278. My favorite canning helper is my friend Julia. When we do our canning together, time flies and we come up with lots of good ideas for our next project. This weekend we’ll tackle two bushels of pears and then on to tomatoes! It would be amazing to have an electric helper for them.

  279. My favorite canning helper would be my HUGE electric roaster. I use it to cook down my tomato sauces and my fruit butters….no standing over a hot stove stirring.

  280. Wow! this gadget looks amazing! I am canning my tomato sauce this morning and will use my trusty hand driven food mill once again πŸ™‚ It works for me but maybe someday I will move into the big leagues!

  281. My current favorite helper is my friend Amanda, who opened up a new world of canning possibilities to me. I thought all preserves were one berry, sugar and pectin. Who knew it didn’t have to be that way.

  282. My favorite helper is my knife sharpener. A giant pile of garden goodies is much less daunting to process when your knife cuts through it all like butter.

  283. My favorite canning helper is my husband… And not because he helps me canning! He keeps the kids entertained and out of the kitchen! It’s hard to can with kiddos under foot!

  284. My favorite canning helper is my steam juicer. It helps extend my supplies so that I get two or three recipes out of what used to be one. And it makes cooking things down so much easier.

  285. My wide-mouthed funnel. I use it when buying bulk too since I store lots of grains and beans in my canning jars I just take them along and save packaging.

  286. Although I really love my cherry pitter and my food mill, my favorite helper is my husband who takes the hot jars out of the canner for me.

  287. I usually can by myself so my favorite helper is my Staub enameled cast iron pot. Its a low and round 4 qt one that works perfectly for all sorts of canning projects.

  288. My favorite canning helpers are my kids. They love to get involved and I love seeing them learn something that I love to do.

  289. My favorite helper is my old blue le Creuset pot. It’s too big for some things and too small for others; it’s heavy, it’s chipped on the outside, it’s older than I am, but somehow everything that comes out of it seems to work out. I can’t imagine using a different pot.

  290. My favorite canning helpers are good old, restaurant style, metal tongs. I can put my lids and rings together in the warm water and fish them out in one piece. I also used them to place plum slices into wide mouth jars for canning in syrup. Tongs are like hands that can’t get burned!

  291. Gotta be my jar lifter. It feels so much more secure and stable than tongs for lifting. Although I love my tongs, too – just for other reasons!

  292. My favorite canning helper is my apple peeler/corer. I love fall – it’s my favorite time of year – and one of my and my husbands favorite fall activities is going to the local orchard and picking apples. I’ve spent HOURS at the sink peeling and coring apples with a vegetable peeler and paring knife. No longer! We make pies, apple sauce, and apple butter. Our friends and family love them and they have become standard thank you gifts.

  293. Microfiber cloth- it grips the jars better than normal towels and prevents accidental slippage right after canning or if you are waiting for the jars to cool on the counter. A canning helper inded.

  294. This product looks amazing! My favorite helper is my funnel – less mess! – and my mom for picking up my slack πŸ™‚ Making applesauce tonight for the first time and looking forward to it!

  295. This year we have a garden for the first time – I am so excited to preserve our tomatoes!! I haven’t actually canned anything yet, but I would say this blog is my favorite helper – tons of great info and pictures !!

  296. I really love my huge stainless steel pot that I waterbath can in. It’s from Princess House, it’s paid for itself many times over!

  297. My favorite helper is my Mom. Or, maybe I’m the helper? Growing up, we were always helping Mom can tomatoes, salsa and tomato soup. Now, I can do my own, but I’d still rather can with her!

  298. I took a class with Rachael at Blue Chair Jam in Oakland,CA. She introduced us to using a large spatula with a firm silicone head. What’s fantastic about it is you can feel what’s going on with a batch of jam; I’ve gotten to where I can tell where the batch is in the process by scraping the bottom of the pot.

  299. My favorite helper is my cat…she has a window perch that she sits in and watches/chatters to the birds as I do my thing. My boyfriend will come in as taste tester occasionally.

  300. I would say my favorite helper is my husband, but that isn’t true. He usually isn’t around. My favorite helper is my miniature dachschund who cleans up anything I spill on the floor.

  301. I don’t have a giant canning pot, so my canning rack doesn’t fit (DOH!), so I started using chopstick holders under a steamer basket! It’s weird, but it works!

  302. I am new to canning so I like all my tools, but my favorites are the wide mouth funnel and the jar tongs. I would love to win this tomato strainer—it looks awesome!!!