Monday, July 28, 2014

Homemade tomato sauce - from fresh homegrown tomatoes

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients,

This weekend I found myself with 10 pounds of our homegrown tomatoes. I'd say our garden out back is doing pretty well! I almost canned them fresh but decided to make tomato sauce. This is a half day en-devour but worth it! Here's what 10 pounds of fresh mixed type of tomatoes look like.

Pretty.

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients,

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

Step 1 - Peel the tomato skins. Score each tomato on the bottom with an X. Just score gently, don't cut all the way through! Use a good sharp knife. I used our ceramic one. It's great for cutting tomatoes. It's extremely sharp and never needs to be sharpened. Place tomatoes (in batches) into boiling hot water for about 20-40 seconds. Smaller tomatoes will need less time and larger ones a little extra. Scoop them out and dump them into a bowl of ice water. Then after they cool remove them. 

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom


homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

Step 2 - De-seed the tomatoes. Cut large tomatoes into quarters and smaller ones in half. You'll want to get the seeds and large fibrous bits/stem out. Use a knife to take out any weird looking bits (if you have heirloom there may be a few!) and any stem that you don't want going in your sauce. Use your fingers to get all the liquid and seeds out of the tomatoes. I even squeezed my tomatoes to get lots of liquid out of them. Do this step over a bowl. You'll end up with a ton of liquid, juicy, seedy mess.

Step 2 b (optional) - This step is optional since it doesn't directly go into the making of Homemade Tomato Sauce, however you'll want to do this. Strain out all the bits of extra tomato and seeds to leave perfect raw tomato broth (or tomato water, or tomato juice, depending on what you want to call this by-product). Store this tomato liquid in a container in your fridge. It can be used in cooking for about a week.

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom


homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

Step 3 - Saute petite diced onions, garlic, and carrots in your large pot. Celery of course would be a good addition too, but had none this day. Add the tomatoes to the pot. Mash them down with a potato masher and/or spoon, and/or stick hand blender. I let mine simmer for about 30 minutes before using the stick blender. Add spices and salt as needed. I tossed in a handful of sliced fresh basil from our garden, about a tablespoon of salt, a few other herbs, and a drizzle of olive oil at the end. Let it cook on low for about 2 hours.

Cool and store. You may can this, or fresh in the refrigerator for about 7-10 days, or freeze for up to 4 months. 

homemade tomato sauce, fresh from homegrown tomatoes, recipe, diy, can, fresh, tomato, ingredients, skin, dessed, heirloom

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Peach frozen yogurt


This hot summer evening I made a light and easy dessert - peach frozen yogurt. 


Ingredients 
Frozen peaches - about 16 oz. cut up
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tsp lemon juice
Sweetener to taste. 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup sugar 


Directions 

The night before peel and cut up fresh peaches. They are in season here so I got some local ones. I used 4 large peaches to get approximately 16 ounces. Freeze them on a tray or plate. Lay them out on parchment paper so they don't stick. I regret missing this step since I had to pry mine off the plates.

Once they are frozen (or start here if you bought pre frozen peaches from the grocery store) place about a third of them in your food processor. Add all the Greek yogurt, lemon juice and sugar. I used stevia but you could subsitute honey, sugar or any sweetener here. Blend for a few minutes until soft. This may take up to ten minutes. Stir intermittently as needed to break up the chunks. It will blend soft eventually. Add the remaining peaches slowly until all blended. You may taste it and include more sweetener if you'd like. 

You may eat it now but will probably be the consistency of thick soupy froyo. I recommend packing in ice cream tubs or Tupperware and freezing for a few hours to overnight. 

Enjoy!




(Here's where I thought putting all the frozen peaches in the food processor at once would be a good idea! I have a 7 or 8 cup machine I believe, and that was a bad idea. I recommend starting with just a few and adding more slowly)




Used Jenis containers optional. Freeze and eat yum! 

Makes approximately 1.5 pints. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Summer videos 2014

We've been trying to enjoy the summer before the baby comes in every way we can. That means going out to eat, seeing movies, Saturday morning coffee dates, getting out of the house and enjoying time together. Tony has made a couple videos of our recent 4th of July fireworks and a camping trip we went on to the Charlottesville area. Yes I went camping at 6 months pregnant. I still feel great so why not? 





Monday, June 30, 2014

Meals for the Week – June 29th 2014



Here are our meals for the week. We went to the local farmers market this weekend and got some local produce – fresh mixed greens, berries (not the grocery store ones below!), tomatoes and peppers. There is this one berry farmer that comes and they have all sorts of berries when in season. I wanted to try a couple that I’d never seen before but they were sold out. I can’t remember what they were – black raspberries maybe?

I’ve found that we are buying more organic again lately. For a time when money was tighter we were less semi organic and just regular. Now I’ll say we’re semi organic again. We buy organic cows milk, organic lettuce, spinach, produce, often yogurt, eggs, some fruit, and some meat.

The grilled turkey tenderloin last night was great. I’ll have to post the recipe I made up on the spot for the sauce. Basically a few things tossed in a small pan and you’ve got a sauce! The teeny tiny potatoes from trader joes are so cute and perfect size for baking. They take the same amount of time to cook as brussel sprouts without even having to cut them up! I added some EVOO & s/p for about 25-30 mins at 350F.

Our garden is coming along as well. Very very soon we’ll have real home grown tomatoes. Maybe a week or 2 before the first ones are vine ripened. Actually we did have a few that turned red but they had bottom rot so we tossed them. We’ve since gotten calcium for the plants and can report that there are no signs of bottom rot now! Talk about local!







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