Saturday, August 20, 2011
I had about 10 or 12 tomatoes (I kept meaning to count but I have kids who feel the need to talk to me when I'm trying to do something...I know that NEVER happens to anyone else!)
I rinsed the tomatoes then cut a small "x" in the bottom. This will help you peel them later (trust me on this).Drop them into a pot of already boiling water for about a minute.
Then put them in a bowl of ice water (not sure what happened to that picture!)
As you can see in the picture below, you have a nice start for when you peel your tomatoes. I actually just pulled them off by hand, didn't even need a knife!Now this step may or may not be necessary for you, if you like a more chunky sauce and plan on simmering for a long time (3-4 hours) then you don't need to puree in a blender or food processor. My kids do not enjoy big tomato chunks and I was planning on only simmering for an hour so I put the peeled tomatoes in a blender.
Next I put a couple tablespoons of olive oil in my heated pot, adding in garlic...this is probably my favorite step, I just love the smell of garlic heating up!After the garlic got nice and toasted and the air smelled amazing, I added in some green pepper and onion (remember what I said about the kids not liking chunky, that's why my stuff looks like mush, I put it in the food processor for a bit). This is when I added in my fresh herbs...oregano, basil and thyme. Oh yeah, the air was smelling even more amazing as the flavors were being pulled from the fresh herbs!
I added my tomato puree to the sauteed vegetables and then added about a tablespoon of sugar, and some salt and pepper. If you want your sauce to be a little thicker you can add a can of tomato paste. I did add some tomato paste and for a little heat I also added a shake of Hot Shot which is a red/black pepper blend.
We served it over some wonderful parsley flavored noodles we also got with our Harvest Box...
The color of the butter will vary, depending on the peppers, from a green/yellow to an orange. This is okay. It looks much nicer if you seed the peppers.
I actually cut this recipe into a third.
Hot Pepper Mustard/Butter
36 hot banana peppers (or whatever you have, you will see in my pic that I used a combination of peppers)
1 quart cider vinegar
1 quart prepared mustard (yes, you have to use mustard to make mustard, interesting concept...no?)
6 cups sugar
1 cup flour
DirectionsGrind peppers finely (I put in food processor until they are a mush).
Pour into hot jars,
seal, boiling water bath fifteen minutes.
And ta-da my first ever canning jars...hearing that wonderful "ping" was magnificent!
The husband and the boys have already planned what they are going to eat this with..pretzels, bratwursts, sandwiches and hot dogs!
makes about 2 pints.
1 pound zucchini squash, thinly sliced
1 small yellow onion, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons pickling salt
2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 cup granulated sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons mustard seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
in a salad spinner, or drain on towels.
The brine should not be too warm, or it will cook the vegetables and make them soft.
then ladle the brine over the vegetables. Cover and refrigerate for at least one day before serving. Will keep in the refrigerator indefinitely.
Friday, August 19, 2011
We enjoyed this on a fresh garden salad, my husband loved it. You'll see my goat cheese has black on it, the vendor puts a thin layer on her cheese to help keep it fresh, it doesn't mess with the flavor at all. I'll definitely be making this again!
Honey Goat Cheese Dressing
- 4 oz fresh creamy goat cheese, room temperature
- 1 1/2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1 tbsp water
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a small blender, combine goat cheese, honey, olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, water and season with salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Mix until fully combined and creamy.
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Eggplant Snack Sticks
- 1 medium eggplant (1-1/4 pounds)
- 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 egg, beaten
In a shallow dish, combine the wheat germ, cheese, Italian seasoning and garlic salt.Dip eggplant sticks in egg, then coat with wheat germ mixture.
- Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.
- Spritz eggplant with cooking spray. Broil 4 in. from the heat for 3 minutes. Remove from the oven. Turn sticks and spritz with cooking spray. Broil 2 minutes longer or until golden brown. Serve immediately with marinara or spaghetti sauce.
Monday, August 8, 2011
I had an abundance of tomatoes and I wanted to use as many as I could before I had to start throwing them out to the wild animals that live in our woodline. I love cooking and even baking with sun-dried tomatoes so I figured this would be a great way to use some of these 'maters up.
Now, from everything I read, roma style tomatoes are the best but any kind work. The key is not to have any that are too overripe otherwise they will take forever to pull the moisture from. I just used what I had...
I sliced the tomatoes in half, then scraped out the seeds and pulp out of most of them and even quartered some of those slides. I then sprinkled salt all over the sliced tomatoes. For the last batch (which isn't pictured) I sprinkled salt and Italian Herbs to give a little different flavor.
I lined them up on my dehydrator trayIn my dehydrator these took almost 8 hours to dry (they were a little juicer than I thought, so they took a bit longer). You want them to be dry of moisture but not so dry they crumble.I put most of them in freezer bags and froze to use later. But a few of the regular and a few that I sprinkled Italian Herbs on, I put in jars and covered in olive oil to use for cooking/baking later on.
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded zucchini
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional...I do not enjoy nuts of any type in my baked goods)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch baking pan.
In a large bowl, mix together the oil, sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla until well blended.
Combine the flour, 1/2 cup cocoa, baking soda and salt; stir into the sugar mixture.
Fold in the zucchini and walnuts.
(Your batter will not look as thin/runny as regular brownies, but don't worry, they will be fine! The zucchini will bring out the moisture as it bakes!) Spread evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until brownies spring back when gently touched. To make the frosting, melt together the 6 tablespoons of cocoa and margarine; set aside to cool. In a medium bowl, blend together the confectioners' sugar, milk and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Stir in the cocoa mixture. Spread over cooled brownies before cutting into squares.
For Chocolate Frosting:
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup margarine
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
melt together the 6 tablespoons of cocoa and margarine; set aside to cool. In a medium bowl, blend together the confectioners' sugar, milk and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Stir in the cocoa mixture. Spread over cooled brownies before cutting into squares.
For Cream Cheese Frosting:
2 Tablespoons Butter, Softened
1 package (8 Oz. Size) Cream Cheese, Softened
2 cups Powdered Sugar,
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
Combine butter and cream cheese in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Beat in powdered sugar and vanilla just until smooth
Friday, August 5, 2011
- 1 small ripe cantaloupe
- 2 cups cold fat-free milk, divided (I used 2% milk and it still turned out very good!)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Cut cantaloupe in half; discard seeds. Scoop out pulp (there should be about 4 cups of melon).
- Place cantaloupe and 1 cup milk in a blender or food processor; cover and process until smooth.
- In a large saucepan, combine sugar and remaining milk. Sprinkle gelatin over top; let stand for 1 minute. Heat over low heat, stirring until gelatin is complete dissolved.
- Stir in the corn syrup, salt and pureed cantaloupe.
- Pour into a 13-in. x 9-in. pan. Cover and freeze until partially frozen, about 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Place cantaloupe mixture in a blender; cover and process until smooth. Return to the pan. Cover and freeze until almost frozen, about 1 hour.