September 3, 2012
Thank you, everyone, for your kind words about Kevin. We miss him terribly. I have been working overtime in the kitchen, drowning my sadness in tomato pulp and hot pepper juice and crying the sour tears of one immersed in grating up SO MANY ONIONS. I made a sourdough starter and a new batch of mustard, both of which I’ll tell you about later on. Here’s a picture of my second sourdough loaf, 50% whole wheat, lumpy but delicious (and so much better than the first loaf):
You can see the lumps. But you can’t taste them! And while I need to work on timing the feeding of the starter better with the making of the bread, I did learn how to make that gorgeous, dense, shiny crust. My mom gave me a lovely terra cotta baking dish, but it didn’t come with a lid; it finally dawned on me that any of my oven safe milky glass bowls would work as well, so this loaf was baked with an upturned bowl over it for the first half of the cooking time, and no lid for the second half.
Tomatoes are in season here, and there has been a steady rotation of them from the oven to the freezer. I started roasting and freezing tomatoes this way last year (click for a recipe!), and we liked them so much that they didn’t last half the winter. So this year the goal is to freeze three times as many, a challenge when the only freezer we have is the one atop the fridge, but we’ll figure it out. All winter long, we’ll be enjoying our new favourite quick and dirty pasta dish, which is basically an onion fried in olive oil with a bit of cayenne, a couple of chopped handfuls of roasted, frozen tomatoes, a handful of chopped kalamata olives, and a few tablespoons of vegan pesto (I make it with cashews, and freeze it in a bag rolled flat and scored with lines so I can break off pieces as I need them).
The canner’s been going full throttle as well, with batch after batch of salsa. I’m using the same recipe I always use, with the addition of a tablespoon or so of demerara sugar to each batch to bring out that extra depth of flavour in the tomatoes. And I tried a hot sauce recipe for the first time, from the same book as my favourite salsa. We haven’t used the hot sauce on its own yet, but I did cook some tofu cubes in it for my breakfast bowl, and it’s pretty damned tasty. There will be another batch of this put up before the season is over, because now I’m not sure seven half-pints is enough.
There were seven half-pint jars of rhubarb jam, made with rhubarb from a derby chum’s garden:
And these bad boys, pictured here about to get pickled:
Posted by jodi on September 3, 2012 at 8.44pm