Homemade Pasta Sauce from Whole Tomatoes

 

A guest post from Gloria:

For about the last 2 weeks, I’ve had more tomatoes in my garden than I know what to do with!  My goal for all of my tomatoes was to make salsa, pasta sauce and tomato soup.  I’ve made the salsa, I have yet to research a soup, and here is the pasta sauce.  I searched some websites to find a base for pasta sauce.  Most called for canned tomatoes.  And one of the few that had fresh tomatoes said you should skin them.  Well, since I have cherry and roma tomatoes, that would have taken forever.  I wanted to leave the skins on, plus they are packed with nutrients, and I used an immersion blender, so it turned out just fine.

Ingredients:

Fill a medium pot half full with tomatoes (I halved my roma tomatoes and left the cherry and golden ones whole.  If you use regular tomatoes, I’d chop them up.)
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground pepper
1/2 chopped green pepper (Brewer’s Organics)
1 cup onion (chopped)
1 cup packed basil (from the garden)
about 3/4 cup chopped celery
2 tsp garlic
1 bay leaf

sauce

Directions:

I placed everything in the pot and cooked over medium heat for at least an hour.  Remove the bay leaf and when all of the vegetables are soft, use an immersion blender to blend everything together.  I then turned the burner down to simmer and left the pot on the stove for about another hour, just letting all of the flavors meld together.  (This last step is not necessary, but I like the bold flavor and slowly cooking something this way).

Once cooled, I divided this up into batches to use for the week and to freeze.  When I was ready to make spaghetti this week, I browned some ground turkey (you could substitute ground beef), added the pasta sauce, simmered, and then poured over spaghetti.

Homemade Tomato Sauce

 

A guest post from Michelle:

Pomodoro Sauce

Here is my all-time favorite tomato sauce recipe to serve with a delicious spaghetti squash or your favorite pasta. Pomodoro is an Italian word that simply means tomato. Summer tomatoes taste totally different than other tomatoes. Eat them fresh or cooked, it is a taste like no other. Tomatoes from Brewers Organics are wonderful, especially at this time of the year! This recipe has two big steps: preparing the tomatoes and preparing the sauce.

Blanching Tomatoes:

The first step to making this delicious homemade sauce is to gather your tomatoes for blanching. Blanching is a process to remove the tomato skins. I used about 3-4 huge tomatoes to make 3 cups of blanched tomatoes, but it depends on the juiciness of each tomato

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

2. Prepare an ice water bath in a large bowl nearby.

3. Cut a small “x” on the bottom of each tomato.

4. In batches, place tomatoes in the boiling water for about 30 seconds to one minute (or until the skins are easy to peel off).

5. Remove the tomato immediately and plunge into the ice bath.

6. Peel the tomatoes and halve horizontally.

7. The messy part: over a small bowl, squeeze out all the seeds, using your fingers to get all the seeds out.

8. Chop the peeled and seeded tomatoes.

Pomodoro Sauce:

1 Tablespoon olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, minced or sliced (more if you prefer)

3 cups of blanched tomatoes (24-28 ounces if fine if you have juicy tomatoes!)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon organic or cane sugar

12 fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces

1. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Add garlic and cook it for about one minute, until it turns light brown.

2. Add your delicious tomatoes (including juice) with salt, pepper and sugar.

3. Boil.

4. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. With a wooden spoon, crush the tomatoes as the sauce thickens a bit.

5. Remove from heat and stir in the basil.

Serve with cooked spaghetti squash or cooked pasta. This makes about 1 ½- 2 cups of sauce, depending on the juiciness of the tomatoes. I like to make many batches since the sauce can be frozen for up to six months. In the winter months of Wisconsin, this sauce is a welcome sight!

Pomodoro sauce 2

Easy Caprese Skewer Appetizer

 

caprese

 

A guest post from Ashley:

I wanted to share an easy appetizer recipe that I have made a few times.  It was a fresh, light and delicious hit! Everyone likes a good old caprese salad and this is just a spin off of that. So here are the directions to make cute and simple caprese skewers. This would also be a great snack too if you didn’t have a summer party to go to anytime soon.

Caprese Skewers

1 pint cherry tomatoes
8 oz container of fresh mozzarella balls
Large bunch of basil leaves
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt & Pepper
Toothpicks

1. Put one basil leave, one cherry tomato and one basil leaf onto the toothpick.
2. This should make around 20 skewers. Once you are done with all the skewers, sprinkle Salt, Pepper and Balsamic Vinegar on them and they are ready to be served.

They are so delicious and the single servings are nice because no plates or utensils are necessary. Enjoy this fresh appetizer before some great barbeque food and they won’t fill you up, just satisfy you!

Bruschetta

The McDonald family shares a recipe for homemade tomato bruschetta.

bruschetta organic produce delivery milwaukee

Summer time always brings an abundant supply of tomatoes from our Brewer’s Organics boxes or from the garden.  It’s always great when you can make something delicious and simple with those tomatoes that does not require any cooking at all!  This past weekend we had Bruschetta as an appetizer for a birthday party at our house.  What is great about Bruschetta too is it is easy to make a large amount with little extra work.

 

Ingredients (8 servings)

8-Roma (plum) tomatoes, diced

1/3 cup chopped basil

¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese

2-cloves garlic, minced

1-tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1-teaspoon olive oil

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

 

In a bowl, toss together tomatoes, basil, Parmesan cheese, and garlic.  Mix in the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, kosher salt, and black pepper.  Serve on toasted bread slices or garlic bread.

Snacky Tomato & Tuna Sailboats

Snacky Sailboats with police boat

Ahoy! Here is a nutritious, snacky lunch that kids will eat without complaints, especially if they like tuna fish. My kids love tuna fish! This creative lunch would be fun for a special, nautical-themed picnic where sailboat toys, rubber duckies and any number of fish toys would be most welcomed.

Ingredients:
Tomato, halved
2 cans of tuna fish
Celery, diced
Onion, diced (optional)
Cheddar cheese slices
Goldfish crackers
Dab of cream cheese (optional)

Directions:
1. The sailboat consists of a hollowed out tomato. I used almost an entire tomato because my kids love tomatoes! Green peppers, red peppers, yellow peppers or cucumbers could also be used for the vessel. The boat is filled with tuna salad. (I used two cans of drained tuna, one tablespoon of mayonnaise, and one diced celery after my kids banned the onion.)

2. The mast of the sailboat is made from a carrot stick. We LOVE using the rainbow carrots from Brewers Organics! How fun are purple carrots?? Your mast could be one of many possible carrot colors! The mast is pushed deep into the tuna salad.

3. The sail of the sailboat is created from cheese. We used cheddar cheese. since a swiss-cheese sail might be asking for sailing trouble! To adhere the sail to the mast, use a sticky substance such as cream cheese. Other possible sails could be designed with a lettuce leaf or a slice of mango or pear.

Finally, the table can be prepared to look like Lake Michigan! I used blue wrapping paper with scattered Goldfish crackers. We also welcomed my son’s special police boat to the meal. Soon, the edible boats were devoured and creative commentaries were heard about the perils of vegetable-sailing on Lake Michigan. “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” spouted from the mouths of these young sailors before they caught all the remaining fish. Fun, nutritious and enjoyable!

Snacky Sailboat alone