29 October 2009

Ginger-Granny Sauce

I'm taking you back about a month ago, to a Thursday afternoon and making applesauce in my sister-in-law's kitchen. I won't bore you with the whole saga of getting the "wrong" apples (Granny Smith) and then getting the "right" ones (Ginger Gold). Though we had anticipated making our batch of applesauce from just the Ginger Golds, we decided to experiment with what we had on hand. And I'm rather glad we did!

We ended up using all the apples, carefully controlling the ratio of Granny's to Gold's we put in for consistency; it amounted to three parts Ginger Gold to every one part Granny Smith. I thought the Granny's would be terrible for making applesauce because of their tart nature, but they added a much-needed apple-y depth of flavor to the milder/sweeter Golds. We did add some sugar to taste (a scant 1/2-cup for about eight quarts), and I became the proud owner of 19 (now 16) quarts of green-gold applesauce. Many thanks to my mom for the canning jars!

apples in waiting


final product

27 October 2009

Tired Woman Soup

Ever worked an eight-hour day on your feet and not been too eager to cook up dinner when you got home?

Yep. Me.


The recipe for this soup is more like a treasure hunt, really. Between my fridge, freezer, and cupboards I scrounged up these items: oil, onion (saute together); cooked broccoli stems in their cooking water, carrots (chop), half-bag of frozen green beans, small container of frozen ham cubes (dump all this in and bring to a simmer); Oh! and add a quart of home-canned roma tomatoes and a handful or so of lentils. Cook until everything is tender. Salt and pepper.

Cook's Word: the soup turned out much tastier than I expected. I decided not to use any other seasonings besides what already existed in the ingredients and salt & pepper. I ended up making a huge pot of soup which yielded about four meals, plus a quart still in the freezer. For another one of those evenings I come home too tired to cook. =)

18 October 2009

Pizza Flop

I guess I'm kinda glad my camera is loaned away at the moment, so that I have an excuse for not posting any pictures of the pizza I made this evening. While my husband insisted that it was good, I think I'm gonna have to call it a flop.

I have my reasons why:

1. I ran out of white flour at 1/2 cup. Ooops! I was already too dedicated to the idea of pizza (on the new-to-us pizza stone we scored at a local thrift store for $5).

2. I didn't increase the pizza dough like I normally do. Thin, dense, brown crust.

3. I forgot to add any seasonings to the sauce-less pizza. Just a little salt would have improved it immensely.

4. Bagged, pre-shredded cheese. I have finally decided it's tasteless. And I want to taste the ooey-gooey stuff on my pizza.

Well, there you have it. Uncensored pizza flop. We can only go up-hill from here. By the way, does anyone have a "fool-proof" pizza crust recipe they'd like to share? I seem to get 50-50 results with mine (probably due in part to the inconsistency in what kind of flour I use). =)

04 October 2009

The Green Tomato Strikes Again!

If it's nearing the first frost in your hometown like it is here, you might be trying to think of a way to salvage all those not-quite-ripe tomatoes. Well, here's another idea if drying them doesn't appeal to you . . .

Green Tomato Tart*

2 cups sliced green tomatoes
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 TBSP flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 pie crust, unbaked
Instructions: Place sliced tomatoes in a bowl and pour boiling water over them to cover. Soak 10 minutes. Drain the tomatoes and add sugar, flour, and spices, stirring to coat. Roll crust into a rough circle, place on a baking tray (or in a pie plate) and pile tomato mixture in the center. Fold the edges of the dough over the filling, leaving the center open. Bake at 375F until crust looks done (20-30 minutes). Best eaten warm!

Cook's Word: This tart reminds me a little of apple pie because of the cinnamon flavor. Eaten cold is has more of a tomato-y taste than it does right out of the oven. I think I actually prefer dried or fried green tomatoes to this, but then you don't get to eat any pie crust!

*The idea for this tart is a "Green Tomato Pie" recipe from the Mennonite Community Cookbook (c. 1950). Since I didn't have enough tomatoes for the 3 cups called for, I simply scaled down, did away with the molasses and water, and made it into a tart instead. =)