In August, when the garden is bursting, I've got to put in the work with the harvest while it's still going which has meant a very busy few weeks. Before, during and after regular work hours, I've been making tomato sauce, drying tomatoes, churning out pesto, roasting peppers, freezing veggies and more. This is what I get when I innocently plant a modest few plants around Mother's Day; paybacks for my naive ambitions.
But, it's therapeutic work. There's no denying, I've had a summer of the Drama Llama. Lots of situations out of my control, but which still very much effect me and those I love the most. Spending the time outdoors pulling weeds, propping up vines, picking fruit and bringing in the fruits of our labors opens up the mind to think, process and work outside the box.
This has meant precious little time to be artfully inclined in the tiny studio, but I feel no less creative when I'm chopping, stirring or tasting something that's been kissed by the sun and infused with great flavors. It's a different kind of process, but equally satisfying.
So, the tomatoes are still madly producing and the recipes keep coming...
First is one that uses the Tipsy Tomato Sauce as a base for Pizza Sauce. We make a lot of pizza and while some members of the family like less sauce and some like more, we all agree that this sauce is 'just right' for us. My son even took a jar to college with him last week.
1 3/4 C. Tipsy Tomato Sauce
1/2 C. tomato paste
2 small cloves garlic minced
1/2 ts. dried oregano or 1 ts. fresh oregano, chopped
1/2 ts. dried basil or 1 ts. fresh basil, chopped
1 1/2 ts. sugar
1/4 ts. salt
Place all ingredients in a blender and process for 15 seconds or until smooth. If you have them, in the summer use fresh herbs. The fresh basil, most especially, makes a difference in the flavor of the sauce, but dried always works. It's pizza sauce; not the Holy Grail.
Another great recipe is for Grilled Stuffed Tomatoes. This one comes from the tomato recipe collection I talked about with the first tomato recipe post. With some farm fresh corn and whatever protein you throw on the grill, this rounds out a very nice meal with full flavor...
Grilled Stuffed Tomatoes
2 large, firm tomatoes
3 T. dry seasoned bread crumbs
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 ts. fresh basil, chopped (just a leaf or two)
2 ts. fresh parsley
1/4 C. grated mozarella
2 T. butter, softened
Cut the tomatoes in half crosswise. Scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon. Combine the remaining ingredients and pack into the tomato cavities. Place on aluminum foil cute side up and grill for 15-20 minutes or until tomatoes are heated through and the cheese is melted.
~I've changed up the song playlist with some Back to School stuff. Am I imagining or did I feel the first cool, crisp hint of Fall in the air this morning?