Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tomato Info

I just came across this fact when reading up on tomatoes.

Outdoor tomatoes, if taken care of and watered properly can yield 10 lb each.

I also read if it's a good year, you can expect sometimes up to 20 lb per plant.

Well this being a very good year for us..... and we had over 70 plants in the ground,
does that mean we harvested somewhere between 700 to 1400 lbs of tomatoes?

I wish I had weighed our harvest.

Mind boggling numbers!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Green Tomato Ketchup


  • 6 pounds green tomatoes
  • 3 pounds onions
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons mixed pickling spices, optional
  • 2 cups vinegar
  • 1 cup honey


Slice green tomatoes and onions; place in a large pot with pepper, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. If using, put the mixed pickling spices in a small cheesecloth bag and add to the mixture. Pour vinegar over all and cook for 4 hours over very low heat, stirring occasionally. Carefully puree mixture in a blender; strain through a mesh strainer. Return to pot and bring to boil; add honey. Immediately fill 6 sterilized pint jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Wipe the jar tops and threads clean with clean damp towels. Place hot sealing lids on the jars and apply the screw on rings loosely. Process in boiling water bath in a deep canning pot for 5 minutes. Remove the jars and cool completely. Tighten the jar screw rings to complete the sealing process. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger. (If lid springs back, it is not sealed and must be refrigerated.) Let jars of green tomato ketchup stand at room temperature 24 hours. Store unopened product in a cool dry place up to one year. Refrigerate green tomato ketchup after opening.
Makes 6 pints of green tomato ketchup.

Are you tired of green tomatoes yet?
I am but, I have buckets and buckets of them still to process into something.
I think we must have picked about 50 pounds of them three days ago.
Big sigh.......

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Old-fashioned Tomato Ketchup

Homemade ketchup is rich, full-bodied and infinitely better than the over-processed, corn syrup-laden commercial version.


7 pounds tomatoes, chopped

2 cups onion, chopped

1 cup bell pepper, chopped

½ cup sugar

1 tablespoon molasses

1 1/4 cup cider vinegar

Spice packet:

12 whole cloves

15 whole allspice

6 cardamom pods

1 teaspoon coriander seed

1 cinnamon stick

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon coarse salt

1 teaspoon black peppercorns


Place chopped tomatoes, onions and peppers in a large pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Press through a food mill to make a smooth sauce.

To make the spice packet, cut a 5-inch square of cheesecloth, place the spices in the centre and tie closed with a piece of twine.

Return the sauce to the pot and add sugar, vinegar and the spice packet.

Simmer on medium-low heat for 30 minutes to an hour until the sauce has reduced down to the desired consistency. Stir often to prevent the bottom burning.

Remove from the heat and discard the spice packet. Ladle the thickened sauce into hot, sterilized jars leaving ½ inch headspace and heat-process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

Makes about 3 pints.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Green Tomato Chutney

  • 2 pounds diced green tomatoes
  • ½ cup finely chopped shallots
  • 3 apples, chopped
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 finely minced cloves of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger
  • 1 small hot pepper, deseeded and finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Place all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until everything is cooked and the mixture has thickened. Stir regularly to keep it from burning in the pan.

Pour the chutney into hot, sterilized jars leaving half an inch of headspace and heat-process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes. Makes about 4 cups.

From Saturday's Globe and Mail

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Homemade Natural Deodorant

- 2 tablespoons baking soda
- 2 tablespoons starch of your choice (arrowroot powder, corn starch, potato starch, tapioca...)
- 3 tablespoons organic virgin coconut oil, softened (available at natural foods stores)

In a small bowl, combine the baking soda and starch. Add the coconut oil, and stir it in until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a flexible food container -- this can be a small plastic tub, or a couple of muffin liners -- and refrigerate for a few hours, until hard.

(If you have an empty deodorant tub with a little wheel thing that pushes the stick up like a push-up ice pop, I'm fairly sure you could refill it with the coconut mixture. I couldn't bring myself to buy one only to throw out the deodorant stick, though, so I haven't tried it.)

Once hardened, pop the stone (or stones, if you've made several) out of the container(s), and rub it on like an ordinary deodorant. Keep in an airtight container in the fridge to preserve that rub-on texture, or at room temperature to apply like a lotion.

This amount will last one person 2-3 months.

Green Tomato Pickles

This is a great way to put those early green tomatoes to use. Not as sweet as bread and butter pickles, but tart like dilled, green tomato pickles are the perfect relish for any lunch plate.

Makes about 9 x 500 ml jars.

7 lb (3.2 kg) green plum tomatoes, about 35 medium

2 medium cooking onions

1/4 cup (50 ml) pickling salt

2 medium sweet red peppers

1 lemon

1 tbsp (15 ml) celery seed

3 tbsp (45 ml) mustard seed

1 tbsp (15 ml) Each: green peppercorns, dill seed

4 cups (1000 ml) vinegar

2 cups (500 ml) water

1 cup (250 ml) granulated sugar

• Day 1: Thoroughly wash and remove cores from tomatoes. Thinly slice tomatoes and onions crosswise, sprinkle with 1/4 cup (50 ml) pickling salt; cover and let stand 12 hours in a cool place.

• Day 2: Place 9 clean 500 ml mason jars on a rack in a boiling water canner; cover jars with water and heat to a simmer (180°F/82°C). Set screw bands aside. Heat SNAP LID® sealing discs in hot water, not boiling (180°F/82°C). Keep jars and sealing discs hot until ready to use.

• Thoroughly drain tomatoes and onions; do not rinse; set aside tomatoes and onions.

Wash and seed red peppers; slice into thin strips. Wash and thinly slice lemon; remove seeds; set aside.Tie celery seed in a square of cheesecloth, creating a spice bag.In a large, deep stainless steel saucepan, combine reserved tomato mixture, red pepper, lemon, spice bag, mustard seed, peppercorns, dill seed, vinegar, water and sugar; mix well. Bring to a boil, boil gently 1 minute; remove from heat. Pack pickles into a hot jar to within 3/4 inch (2 cm) of top of jar. Add hot cooking liquid to cover pickles to within 1/2 inch (1 cm) of top of jar (headspace). Using nonmetallic utensil, remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if required, by adding more cucumbers and hot pickling liquid. Wipe jar rim removing any food residue. Centre hot sealing disc on clean jar rim. Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight. Return filled jar to rack in canner. Repeat for remaining cucumbers and hot pickling liquid.When canner is filled, ensure that all jars are covered by at least one inch (2.5 cm) of water. Cover canner and bring water to full rolling boil before starting to count processing time. At altitudes up to 1000 ft (305 m), process –boil filled jars – 15 minutes.*When processing time is complete, remove canner lid, wait 5 minutes, then remove jars without tilting and place them upright on a protected work surface. Cool upright, undisturbed 24 hours; DO NOT RETIGHTEN screw bands. After cooling check jar seals. Sealed discs curve downward and do not move when pressed. Remove screw bands; wipe and dry bands and jars. Store screw bands separately or replace loosely on jars, as desired. Label and store jars in a cool, dark place. For best quality, use home canned foods within one year.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fried Green Tomatoes

  • 2 whole Medium, Firm Green Tomatoes
  • bacon fat (yes bacon fat as it tastes the best)
  • 1 cup Vegetable Oil, if you don't want to use bacon fat
  • ½ cups Milk
  • ½ cups Whole Wheat or, White Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoons Pepper
  • ½ teaspoons Optional Seasoning, garlic, chili powder, whatever you like
  • 3 whole Eggs Beaten
  • ½ cups Cornmeal

Use a mandoline to slice each tomato into eight 1/4-inch thick slices. Use a cast iron skillet for the best results. Heat up your bacon fat or, your oil of choice.

Meanwhile, set up breading station using 4 shallow dishes. Put milk in the first; flour, salt, pepper and seasoning in the second; eggs in the third; cornmeal in the fourth. Dip a tomato slice in the milk, then the flour mixture, then the egg, then the cornmeal. Fry tomato slices for 2 minutes on each side. If they are browning too quickly, turn the heat down. They will need about 4 minutes total for the tomato to become slightly softened on the inside. Repeat with all tomato slices. Remove tomatoes and drain on a paper towels. Serve warm.

Makes 16 slices.

Since yesterday's post was about green tomato mincemeat and I talked of glorious and beautiful fried green tomatoes... well here is the recipe I use. Enjoy!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Vegetarian Green-Tomato Mincemeat

Vegetarian Green-Tomato Mincemeat

3 pounds green tomatoes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup of salt
3 cups of seedless raisins (about 1 large package)
1/4 cup boiling real apple cider vinegar, if desired
2 large apples, chopped and cored but not peeled
1 large orange, chopped and cored but not peeled
1 cup of sugar
1 pint of DARK corn syrup
2 Tablespoons pumpkin pie spice

Spread sliced tomatoes in a non-metal container; sprinkle with salt. Let stand overnight. Rinse, drain and rinse quickly again. If desired, soak the raisins in 1/4 cup of boiling hot cider vinegar for 15 minutes to plump. Chop the tomatoes into small bits. (Use a food processor, it is easier and quicker). In a large non-aluminum kettle, place all of the ingredients, including tomatoes. Cover the pan and let simmer for 40 minutes. Uncover the pan. Allow the mincemeat to boil gently for 1 hour 15 minutes. During this time, stir the ingredients occasionally. Do not burn or the recipe will be ruined.

Dump into a pie shell, cover with second crust and bake at 350 for 40 minutes or, until the pie shell is nicely browned.

I have to do something with all the green tomatoes in my garden as we are well into October now. I can't stand seeing them go to waste. This is one way I will use them up. Another way... tomato relish oh and who could forget the fried green tomatoes!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

"Hunter's Moon"

This is Andy McKee performing Hunter's Moon.

October 11, shines the full Hunter’s Moon, which follows autumn’s Harvest Moon.

In pioneer days, after the vegetables were stored for the winter, it was time to go farther afield looking for wild game. Deer were fattening, and Native Americans and farmers sought a store of good venison for the cold winter days to come.

Unlike the buffalo or the antelope, the white-tailed deer is estimated to be roughly as numerous today as it was when the Pilgrims joined the Native Americans on this continent

Monday, October 3, 2011

Test Your Observations Skills

I scored a 17 out of 25. The test said that was a good score. I don't think so....

You give it a try and see how you do. The questions are simple enough and easy to answer.


Oh and it won't take you long to do this.... unless of course you go looking for help on the answers.


Little old me...

My photo
An american yankee up past the 49th parellel.


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