Archive for the ‘Tomatoes’ Category

Erin’s pasta sauce with frozen tomatoes.

This is how I make up my pasta in the winter.  Its fresh taste brings a blast of summer memories back.

An hour or two before supper get 6 tomatoes out of the freezer.  Run under hot water to slip off the skins and sit the tomatoes in a colander in your sink to thaw.  Going to work?  Skin your tomatoes in the morning and sit them in a container in your fridge while you are at work.  They’ll be ready for you when you get home.

Saute 3 cloves of sliced garlic, and one small minced onion until translucent

Add in 2 cups of sliced mushrooms and saute until soft. I like to add a lot of fresh cracked pepper at this point and a wee bit of smoked sea salt.  If you like oregano, this is the time to add it in.

Turn up the heat on the pan to that everything is really really hot, then slice  your still partially frozen tomatoes into the pan and stir it all up.  Once bubbling, I like to add in 2-4 cups of chopped greens.  Depending on my mood I’ll add in chopped spinach, kale, swiss chard or collards.  I’ll add in 2-4 cups depending on how much other veg I happen to have chucked into the sauce.

Sometimes I like to throw in some frozen basil at the end, sometimes a handfull of crumbled feta or Parmesan cheese, it all depends on my mood.

Once everything is cooked and bubbling, serve over pasta done to your liking.

Enjoy!

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Lazy Erin’s way to preserve tomatoes.

The garden/Field tomatoes are beautiful right now.  Juicy, zippy, flavourful, they are everything that tomatoes should be.

I would love to can tomatoes for winter use but honestly, I’m just too busy and too lazy to start working with a pressure canner.

Solution!!!

Take as many tomatoes as you would like to freeze.

You can wash them if you like, but I don’t even bother.  If you do wash them, be certain that they are dry before freezing.

Chuck as many tomatoes as you would like in a plastic bag, old ice cream pail, tupperware, ziplocks whatever.

Put them in your freezer and freeze them.

To use, remove the number of tomatoes that you would like to work with.  Run the rock hard frozen tomatoes under warm water.  Slip the skins off.

You can chuck these whole frozen tomatoes into soups, stews or chillis.

Alternatively, you can sit your skinned frozen tomato in a colander in your sink for a few hours.  As the tomatoes thaw, they drain off a lot of their excess water leaving you with a partially concentrated tomato pulp that makes salsa, sauces and the like a breeze.  You won’t have to cook off the excess water!!!

Everyone can do this.  It’s easy, efficient and safe.  If you have the freezer space, you no longer have any reason to buy imported canned tomatoes in the winter.

Enjoy!

Grilled Zucchini or patty pan squash with cherry tomatoes

I love grilled zucchini just by itself but add in some cherry tomatoes and you suddenly have such a flavourful dish that EVERYONE wants seconds.  Think of this as a simplified summer ratatouille.

Very easy.  Just..

Heat your bbq to medium high

Wash then slice 3 medium zucchinis (yellow or green) lengthwise.  I cut each zucchini into 3 equal (ish) sized strips.

You can also use patty pan squash.  If they are small use them whole, if larger, cut in half.  I’d use between 12-15 patty pan for this recipe depending on their size.

Remove the green stems from two pints of cherry or cocktail tomatoes.  The tomatoes have to be good.  It’s the acidy zip which good tomatoes add to the dish that drives the flavour.  Buy cheap imported cherry tomatoes and this dish will not work out.

Brush the zucchini slices with my easy peasy lemon squeezey dressing. (recipe also on this blog)

Please slices on the grill and set your timer for 4 minutes.

After the 4 minutes flip your zucchini slices and toss your cherry tomatoes in the same dressing, place in a veggie bbq basket and put on the grill with the zucchini.  Don’t have a veggie bbq basket?  Just put the cherry tomatoes on a skewer.

Set your timer for 5 more minutes.

After the 5 minutes, remove the zucchini, place in a heat proof dish, cover the zucchini with the roasted cherry tomatoes and cover the whole things with foil or a lid or a plate that fits to cover.  Let the dish sweat out for 2-3 minutes.

Serve to the hungry masses!  To truly enjoy this simple dish, you need to have a bite of tomato with each bite of zucchini.

Local greek salad

It’s simple, it’s fresh, it’s delicious, it’s LOCAL!

Cube one St. Anne’s hot house cucumber into salad sized bites

Cube 2 St. Anne’s hot house tomatoes into salad sized bites

Chop up 3/4 cup of Oak Island goat dairy’s feta cheese

Chuck ingredients together into a big bowl, toss with one bag of organic spring mix, or organic baby spinach

Toss with 1/3 cup of my Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy dressing.

Add freshly ground pepper to taste

Add olives to taste.

Serve with a slice of grilled ciabatta bread and you have a meal!

Local Tomato BLAT for many!

You have people over for lunch, what to do?

Cook up 8-12 strips of Berkshire Bacon, or our Natural Bacon.

Slice up 2 large St. Anne’s Tomatoes

Wash and pat dry 4 lettuce leaves

Mix up the flesh of one-2 avocados with the juice of one lime

Take one Ciabatta loaf from our bakery.  Slice it in half to make a big sandwich.  Brush with olive oil and grill cut side down on  a hot grill for 1-3 minutes, until desired toastiness is reached.

Layer Toasted Ciabatta, avocado, tomato, bacon, lettuce, ciabatta.  Add pepper to the tomato slices to your taste.  No need to add salt, the bacon takes care of that.

Secure your large sandwich with toothpicks and cut with a sharp bread knife into triangles, or squares.

Enjoy!

Local Tomato BLAT

The regular old BLT may hold some charm, but when the local hot house tomatoes come in, it’s truly reason to celebrate.  They have TASTE!!!

The Best BLAT

Slice up one big St. Anne’s Hot house tomato

Fry up 3-4 strips of either berkshire pork bacon, or our Naturally raised pork bacon, drain

While the bacon is cooking, scoop out the flesh of one avocado.  With a fork , beat the avocado into a smoothish creamy consistency.  Add the juice of one lime, beat some more.  This is your A in the BLAT.  A much tastier option to Mayo.

Toast 2 slices of your favourite bread, I like to use our alpine grain bread.

Layer bread, Avocado, Tomato, Bacon,  Lettuce, Bread.  If you keep the lettuce and the Tomato away from each other, you get a less slippery sandwich.

Enjoy!

Cream of (insert vegetable name here) soup.

Cream of (insert vegetable name here) soup

Cream of veggie soups are ridiculously easy to make. It gets even easier if you have one of those stick hand held immersion blenders in your kitchen.

-Peel chop and sautee one onion and a few cloves of chopped garlic on medium heat. You can sautee it in olive oil, butter, margarine, whatever, it’s your soup, do as you will.

-Add about 4 cups of chopped veg of choice to the pot (broccoli works well, so does cauliflower, butternut squash, potato and leek, carrot, corn choose any one of them)

-I like to sautee the veg a bit, getting a little bit of caramelization going.

-Add a quarter tsp of black pepper if you like black pepper

-Add 4 cups (1 litre) of vegetable or chicken stock.

-Stir the whole thing up and let it simmer until your veg is cooked.
How long will it take? Depends on the veg, broccoli will be done in just 10-15 minutes, butternut squash will take longer. Test it with a fork to see how smushy things are getting.

-When your veg is soft, grab that immersion blender, plug it in and CAREFULLY start blending the veg that is cooking in the broth. You can keep your soup as chunky or make it as smooth as you would like. If you have no immersion blender you can mash everything up with a potato masher, or for a smoother texture, let the contents of the pot cool and put small batches in your blender to whisk things up.

-Return everything to the pot if you have removed things for blending

-At this point you can add dairy to make your soup as creamy as you would like. Sometimes I leave it as it and just serve it with a spoonful of yogurt or sour cream. If you are on a diet, low fat yogurt can add a nice thickness of flavour to the soup. Don’t care about the calories? A half a cup of cream will do nicely. Worried that you’ll do the wrong thing. Take a small scoop out of the pot, and try it with a little yogurt. Is it nice? No, try some with a little milk, or some cream, or some sour cream, or some creme fraiche. It’s your soup, make it how you like it.

-Taste your soup. Is it bland? Does it need more pepper? Is there a spice that you have a thought that might go well with this vegetable puree soup that you have made? I like to add some ginger to my carrot soup, sometimes corriander, sometimes I add some curry powder to my butternut squash or carrot soup. My mom likes to throw grated sharp cheddar cheese into everything (you can’t really disagree with a move like that).

Once you get the hang of it, you can churn out a pot of soup in half an hour while doing 5 other things. It’s really that easy.
Serve with toasted Ciabatta, or Alpine grain bread and tada! Lunch is served.