Saturday, July 26, 2008

It's tomato season, and...

For someone who loves to cook, I certainly haven't done much with canning.

Well. I still haven't done much, but at least I've gotten my feet wet.
But, suffice it to say that when I came home from the farm where I get my eggs on Thursday, I had a lot more produce than I expected-- about 20-30 pounds of Roma tomatoes.

First I froze two gallon-size bags of plain tomatoes--and made fresh-tomato pasta sauce for dinner.

Then, after reading more recipes than is healthy, I decided to make roasted tomato sauce. It's easy: coat a cookie sheet in olive oil, slice tomatoes in half, throw in 4 whole cloves of garlic, some rosemary, and sprigs of thyme. Roast at 400 degrees for 25 minutes, and 350 for 40-45 degrees. Take the tomatoes out of the oven, discard the spice sticks, and puree. Freeze if you want to store.

Then I was ready to can. My mother and I got out her pressure cooker that was last used over thirty years ago, and went to work skinning tomatoes, cutting up herbs, and sterilizing jars. The only different thing I tried here was some Italian diced tomatoes with minced garlic and fresh basil and oregano. (I think I need to fill my jars a little more next time. Ya live, ya learn.)

The last: Oven-dried tomatoes with herbs in olive oil. I sliced my tomatoes in half, removed the seeds, and placed them on racks. After oven-drying for 12 hours on the oven's lowest setting, I decided to put it on convection to speed up the process. By noon today, I was finally done drying tomatoes (I think a dehydrator would have been much easier--and if I'd peeled to tomatoes, it would have been even easier.) I rough-chopped them, mixed them with basil, thyme, and oregano, and packed them in jars. After pouring olive oil over the tomatoes, I slid I knife around the sides to release any air bubbles, sealed them, and pressure-canned them.

--And this is what's left:

I want more.

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Monday, July 21, 2008


I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from which cometh my help.

My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth

He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth the will not slumber,

Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall not slumber nor sleep.

The LORD is thy keeper, the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand

The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night

The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil, he shall preserve thy soul.

The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Psalms 121

more pictures from this year's trip to the Smokies on my picasa

Saturday, July 12, 2008

New York, New York

After my loooong sabbatical from this weblog, I'm returning with pictures from Becca's and my trip to NYC:

(I'm not going to write up this trip--though it was fabulous--
I'm supposed to be packing for another trip--!)

More photos are on my picasa site.

God Bless y'all!

Posted via web from marielenora's posterous