|On a walk with my grandsons on a late afternoon in early August--and it wasn't too warm!|
|It's been cool enough to sit outdoors in my new happy place. The chair is from a set of porch furniture my parents bought in the 1950's. It was originally painted green, but in later years my dad stripped the green paint to find lovely maple underneath. Outfitted in three cushions from The Dollar Store, I joked that the chair looked like the wardrobe from Beauty and the Beast: a bit overstuffed. But it feels heavenly. My chairside table is my Grandpa's anvil from his blacksmith's shop. Wonder how he would feel about me using it to hold my iced tea cup??|
Our tomato plants are producing and I've tried my hand at homemade ketchup. I'll share the recipe for the batch I made this afternoon; it was so savory and delicious that I had to restrain myself from eating it like soup! Here is the recipe as I wrote it for my grown-up children:
...not quite like Grandma Opal’s but pretty good nonetheless...I used The Pioneer Woman’s ingredient list but with fresh rather than canned tomatoes and proportionately more sugar. And to tell the truth, I’m pretty sure Grandma used more sugar yet. And probably more vinegar too. And she probably had never heard of Worcestershire sauce....
· 14 cups tomato juice from about 10 lbs. ripe tomatoes.
o Blanch ‘em, peel, core and quarter them, and put the juice through a wire sieve to get rid of the seeds. It’ll take a little bit--stir it around, moosh it down with the back of a spoon...fill the sieve and go have a cup of coffee. Or...use one of those tomato squishers. I do not get along with the one Dad uses. He evidently doesn’t mind the fine spray of juice that splatters clothing, floor, and countertops. Maybe it is because I wear glasses and flip-flops, but I mind. And the squisher has a lot of moving parts that have to be dissembled and cleaned.
· 2 medium onions, chopped fine
· 4-5 cloves garlic, minced
· ¼ cup olive oil
· 1 can tomato paste
· 1 cup brown sugar, packed
· 1 cup white sugar
· ¼ cup molasses (if you spray the measuring cup with cooking spray, the molasses will slide right out)
· ½ c. apple cider vinegar
· 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
· 1 Tbsp. salt
· 1 teaspoon chili powder
· 1 teaspoon ground ginger
· 1 teaspoon allspice
· l/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1. Boil the tomato juice for about 20 minutes or so until it has reduced by I have no idea how much. Just cook it down some. Stir it once in awhile.
2. Meantime, saute the chopped onion in the oil over low/medium heat until the onion is translucent.
3. Add the minced garlic to the onion during the last 2 to 3 minutes of cooking time
4. Add the onion mixture and all remaining ingredients to the simmering tomato juice and stir well.
5. Simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring often. It will begin to thicken up a bit.
6. Use an immersion blender to smooth it out. (Don’t use your countertop blender. Trust me on this.)
I freeze this in quart bags, 2 cups to a bag. It is deeee—licious. Add more brown sugar and use it for a meatloaf topping and you’ll become famous. Put some in the meatloaf too.
Yields about 5 pints