Photo Friday – Tomato Harvesting

Over 40 lbs harvested so far this Summer

Have a wonderful and safe weekend


Photo Friday – Freezer Tomato Sauce w/ Recipe

Photo Friday - Tomato Sauce

No story for today.  Just a favorite recipe and my first instagram post.  Yes, I bought an iphone this week.  Its my first big gift to myself in a couple of years, since I bought my camera, and I deserve it.  Let me tell you, this thing is awesome.  I’ve been posting lots of pictures on my twitter feed, which I use as a sort of mini blog.  If you are interested in more of what is going on over here at Chez Melissa, follow me or check out the Twitter column to the right of this post.

Tomato Sauce

Recipe from Heart of the Artichoke by David Tanis

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 8 lbs of ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • Sprig of basil
  • Salt and pepper

1.  Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook until soft, but not browned.  Add the garlic, salt and pepper and cook for another minute to infuse the oil with garlic flavor.

2.  Add the tomatoes and basil.  Crush the tomatoes a bit with a potato masher then bring to a boil.  Boil gently for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3.  Turn the heat to low and simmer, stirring often, for 1 – 1.5 hrs or until the sauce has reduced by about half.  Remove from heat and let cool.

4.  Ladle into glass canning jars leaving 1 inch of space at the top.  Add lids, label and freeze until winter.

Lasts 1 year in the freezer.  Makes about 8 cups.

Photo Friday – Plum Jam with Recipe

I love making jam in the summer.  We don’t bother canning it since we tend to finish it off pretty quickly.  That’s why I love this recipe, because you can make any amount you need.  This week we used red plums, last week it was tropical plums, next week we will see what is on sale.

Our Weekly Jam

  • fruit, one or more types
  • granulated sugar
  • extra jam jars with lids, you can reuse store-bought jam jars

*Use a 1 cup fruit to 1 cup sugar ratio.  I like to use a little less sugar, around 3/4 cup, but if you like sweeter jam then use a whole cup or more.  I used 2 pounds of plums for 1 1/2 jars of jam.

1. Peel apples, pears, plums, citrus, peaches and nectarines.  Basically anything with a thicker skin.  Berries do not need to be skinned.  Peel fruits by boiling in water for 1-2 minutes.  Then plunge into cold water.  The skins should slip off easily.  Don’t worry about getting every scrap of skin.  Just most of it.

2.  Cut up the fruit into little pieces and toss with 1 cup of sugar in a bowl.  Transfer to a saucepan and simmer gently on low heat until the liquid thickens and coats the back of a spoon.  You can also do the plate test.

3.  Pour into jars and store in the refrigerator.  Use within 3 weeks.

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