Saturday, October 1, 2011

15 Gallons of Tomatoes!

Have you ever wondered what to do with 15 gallons of tomatoes???

 First you have to load up on Chi Tea Latte. I think I drank half of mine before my helper consumed the rest.

Then you have your helper wash the tomatoes. This only lasted for about 15 minutes before I encouraged her to go play with her sisters so I could clean up the water on the floor.

I then spent LOTS of time (like hours) cutting tomatoes in halves and quarters.

 On to the baking! Last year I canned all my tomatoes, but this year one of the ladies in my homeschooling group posted a wonderful recipes for baking the tomatoes in the oven to freeze. I decided since I was going to make my kitchen hot I might as well cook on the stove and in the oven at the same time. Here is my first batch of tomatoes reducing in the pot for canning and a cookie sheet full of tomatoes ready to go in the oven.

 Oven roasted tomatoes drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper. I cooked them for 2 hours, blended them and then froze them in 2 cup portions.

 Last time I did this recipe I only put in 2 cookie sheets in my oven, but this time I got smart and used my cookie cooling racks so I could stack 2 additional cookie sheets. Using this method, twice the tomatoes went through with each batch!

 Poor Shawn had to clean the stove after I finished cooking. It's his job and he loves our smooth top stove. Don't feel too bad for him though, because I did the rest of the dishes and there were lots. I only boiled my various pots over a few times. I learned NOT to add 4 blenders full of tomatoes to my pot or it would over flow and make a huge mess.

Ummm...I think I over-boiled my pot. This was what the pot looked like after 4 rounds of tomatoes. I'm soaking this baby all night long and hoping that the dish fairy comes tonight.

 I'm a messy cook! This doesn't include the two-three loads I did while I was washing my canning jars. I cooked all day so I didn't think this was too bad. My floor really needs mopped after today, but I think I'll wait a few more days until I can finish the rest of my produce.

 15 gallons of tomatoes turned in to all this beautiful food! Yep, my dirty dishes are still on the counter.

 I ended up with 40 cups of oven roasted tomatoes drizzled in olive oil. My house smells soooo good. Thanks Gretchen for sharing this recipe!

 10 quarts and 6 pints of plain tomato sauce.

 2 meals of spaghetti sauce (one that we ate tonight for supper) and a bowl full of diced tomatoes that I'm going to use for salsa tomorrow. I ran out of energy after supper and chose to go for a run instead. I also gave my wonderful neighbors a bunch of produce since they are always watching our house for us when we are on vacation.

Tomorrow: salsa, carrots and fruit Popsicles.

 Don't worry, I'm not super woman because my house is a total disaster and my girls spent hours playing at the neighbors and wondering in and out of our house while I cooked.

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