Monday, June 18

Recipe of the Week

This week's recipe is less about tons of ingredients and heading off in amazing new directions in cooking and more about recovering cooking knowledge.

I picked up several pounds of split tomatoes at the farmer's market with the intention of making tomato sauce for my very first time. Then on the way home, my clever chef friend and I stopped at a local thrift store where she spotted a food mill -- which looked very much like the one in that photo and not very much like this one: OXO food mill -- on sale for $2.00. So, home we went.

She sweated chopped green onions and 3 teeth of garlic (whole) in a stewpot while I chopped our 6 lbs of tomatoes into 1" - 1.5" chunks. Then they went in the pot too. The pot got covered and brought up to a boil. As it cooked, we added fresh rosemary and oregano from the garden. The fresh basil is struggling, so we added dried basil and parsley, along with ground pepper and sea salt.

Boil until all the tomatoes have lost most of their structure.

Take it off the heat and put the food mill over a bowl. Add a cup of the tomato mixture to the mill. Start turning the crank. It is helpful to have a spatula handy for encouraging the tomatoes to stay under the pressing part of the mill. It is also helpful to know that on these kinds of food processors turning the crank in the reverse direction will cause the trailing edge of the press to scrape up the solid matter (seeds, skins, pulp) into a pile for another squeezing.

The goal of this process is to get all the liquid out of the tomatoes.

We ended up with a thin sauce which we decided was really tomato soup. Perhaps Romas or other meaty tomatoes would have resulted in a more saucy sauce. Either way, the result was incredibly tasty and made a great complement to grilled cheese sandwiches.

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NotSoBigLiving is the story of a woman inspired by Sarah Susanka, Bill McKibben, Airstreams, Tumbleweed houses, Mennonites, Jimmy Carter, hippies, survivalists, Anasazi, Pema Chodron and Joko Beck, Scott Peck, Buckminster Fuller, and Al Gore to see what she can do to reduce her carbon footprint in her mid-80's suburban townhome. Strategies include roommates, alternative travel, organic eating, planting a victory garden, mindfulness, and a belly full of laughter.