Vegetables

All Things Tomato

I am not the green thumb of our family. But I definitely help plan what grows in our garden each year. With an abundance of tomatoes this summer, we were eating all things tomato. Here are some of my favorites.

Tomato Basil Soup – Serves 4

To get started, you will need about 6-8 medium tomatoes. Get them ready by cutting an X onto the bottom of each tomato. img_09531.jpg Bring a large pot of water to boil. Drop the tomatoes into the pot and cook for about 1-2 minutes. Drain them and then peel the skins off. Core, seed and chop them into large chunks. To start the soup, saute 2 minced garlic cloves in 1 tablespoon of olive oil for about 30 seconds. Add 1 diced carrot, 1 diced zucchini, and the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften. Add 1 cup of chopped fresh basil, 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, 1 tablespoon fresh Italian parsley. Dried herbs will work if you do not have fresh on hand. If using dried herbs, use 1 tablespoon basil and 1/2 tablespoon for the others. Add 2 cups vegetable or chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the temperature to low and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Remove from the heat and blend with an immersion blender until completely smooth. (A regular blender will also work; make sure you transfer in batches and don’t try to blend it all at once). Top with grated parmesan and enjoy! I like to toast and butter some ciabatta bread to dip in the soup as well. You could also drizzle some fresh pesto on top.

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Classic Salsa – 2 pints

In a food processor, combine:

  • 6 medium, large tomatoes quartered  (I fill my processor bowl about three-quarters of the way full)
  • A handful of cilantro, stems removed
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped (adjust to your heat level)
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

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Pulse the processor until you get your desired consistency. I personally do not like chunky salsa, so I blend until there are no more chunks of anything. One variation I made with this recipe was I replaced the tomatoes with tomatillos for a Salsa Verde.

To can the salsa, this recipe will make 2 pint jars. Here’s how to do it. Fill the canning jars. Wipe the rims clean and put on the lids and bands, making sure the bands are clean and dry. Put the jars in a big pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil with the lid on the pot. Boil in the water bath for at least 15 minutes, with the lid on the pot. I boil the salsa verde for 20-25 minutes.

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The red and green jars make an excellent holiday gift
Bruschetta 

In a medium bowl, combine 2-3 medium tomatoes diced, 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil, and 1/2 cup cubed, fresh mozzarella cheese. Toss with olive oil and balsamic vinegar (about 1 tablespoon of each) and season with salt and pepper. Slice a baguette to make toasts. Broil your toasts for 1-3 minutes. (Fun fact: I used to burn everything I put in the broiler. So now I broil with the oven door cracked a couple of inches. It makes me more aware of what I am broiling.) Once they’re toasted rub a raw garlic clove over each one. The only thing left to do is pile some bruschetta onto your garlicy toasts and enjoy!

I hope you’ve enjoyed these tomato recipes. Side note: Every time I have typed “tomato” in this post I have added an “r” to the end. I guess my hands just want some tomators!

Cheers,

Jaz ♥

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