• 6 pounds very ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 3 stalks of celery, leafy tops left whole, stems chopped
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 jalapeño or other small hot pepper, seeded
  • 2 teaspoons salt, or more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon black or white peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon sugar, or more to taste
  • 2-4 tablespoon lemon juice, or more to taste
  • Tabasco or other hot sauce


  1. In a large pan, combine the tomatoes, celery, including the leafy tops, onion, green pepper, red pepper, garlic, jalapeño, 2 teaspoons of salt, coriander, peppercorns, and bay leaf. Set over low heat until the juice is running, about 5 minutes. Raise the heat until the mixture comes to a simmer. Simmer until all the vegetables are very soft, about 30 minutes.
  2. Let cool until the mixture is lukewarm. Pass through a food mill set with the finest blade to remove the tomato seeds and other coarse material. Taste and add sugar and lemon juice to adjust the flavor. If desired, add a few drops of Tabasco for a very spicy mixture.
  3. Store in refrigerator and use within a couple of weeks. For longer storage, reheat the tomato juice until almost boiling. Then pour into either pint or quart canning jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Seal and process for 40 minutes in a boiling water bath.

Additional Notes

From The Tomato Festival Cookbook by Lawerence Davis-Hollander. Yields about 3 quarts.

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