Saturday, August 22, 2020

Tomato sauce



WHEN I make sauce, I no longer waste time peeling and cooking and stirring for hours to get a thick sauce. Instead, I use a pressure canner. The liquid separates from the flesh, I can just pour it off. In less than two hours, I can turn a mountain of whole tomatoes into thick sauce.


You'll need a large stainless steel pressure canner and a food mill, plus a colander, a knife and lots of tomatoes. Halve the tomatoes and toss them into the canner until it's half to two-thirds full - an overload of tomatoes can clog the air vent. Process the tomatoes at 15 pounds of pressure for 10 minutes. Allow the canner to cool by itself or dip it in cool water. When the pressure has dropped, open the canner, and pour the tomatoes into a large colander in the sink. Reserve some of the liquid to thin the sauce, as it will be quite thick. While the tomatoes are draining, wash and rinse the canner. It is much easier to clean now than later.


Now take the tomatoes and run them through your food mill to remove the skins and puree the meat. Presto! You have thick, rich sauce that is ready to can, freeze, or make into spaghetti sauce. One filling of the canner makes only 4 to 5 pints of thick sauce, but it is so quick that you can do several batches in an hour.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Grandma Alta's Sweet Potatoes

3-4 medium large sweet potatoes, peeled
1 stick butter
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup cinnamon red hots

Peel potatoes. Slice longways (end to end) in 1/2 in or a little thicker slices.
Place potatoes in a large skillet. Add enough water to just cover. Bring to a boil and cook till just tender but still firm, not mushy. Drain all but about 1/2 cup water.
Cut up butter around potatoes. Add sugar and red red hots around potatoes.
Stir gently until sugar and red hots are dissolved. Add a little more water if necessary.
Cook on medium high heat until sugar mixture is thick and syrupy.
One time Alta put dollups of Kraft marshmallow creme on top when she served them. We never eat them that way.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Fruit Dip for Fresh Fruit

1 8oz. Pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 envelope dry Dream Whip (found in a box near Jello)
2 Tbs. milk
1 jar Kraft Marshmallow cream

Fresh strawberries, cleaned with stems in tact
Grapes, pineapple chunks, apple slices (rinsed in lemon juice water to prevent browning)
Other fruit of choice cut in dipping size pieces

1. Beat cream cheese, dry Dream Whip and milk together until smooth and well blended.

2.  Fold in jar of marshmallow cream .

3.  Place in bowl on platter surrounded with fruit for dipping. Can be made one day ahead.

For a different taste, add 1 tsp of grated orange zest to dip.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

2 cups crushed pretzels
3/4 cup butter (melted)
3 TBS. white sugar

8oz. pkg. cream cheese
1 C. white sugar
1 8oz. container Cool Whip, thawed
2  3oz. pkgs. strawberry jello
2 cups boiling water
2 10oz packages frozen strawberries (slightly thawed)

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Stir together crushed pretzels, melted butter and 3 tablespoons sugar; mix well and press mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish.
  3. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, until set. Set aside to cool.
  4. In a large mixing bowl cream together cream cheese and 1 cup sugar. Fold in whipped topping. Spread mixture onto cooled crust. Make sure mixture is spread all the way to the edges.  This keeps the jello layer from seeping under the crust. 
  5. Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in still frozen strawberries and allow to set briefly. When mixture is about the consistency of egg whites, pour and spread over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate until set.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Texas Caviar

1 can black beans drained and rinsed
1 can black eyed peas drained
1 can shoe peg corn drained
1 can rotel tomatoes drained
1 small can diced green chilis- I use medium but you can use mild if you don’t like much spice.
½ medium red onion chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
½ green bell pepper chopped
½ red bell pepper chopped
½ tsp. ground coriander
½-3/4  cup chopped cilantro
1 cup zesty Italian dressing 

Mix all ingredients together except cilantro.  Cover and chill for 2 hrs.  Mix in cilantro before serving.  Serve with tortilla chips for dipping.  Very addictive. 

Friday, October 23, 2015

Refrigerator slaw

2-3 bags angel hair slaw or regular cole slaw mix  (you can also shred a head of cabbage with a food processor but the bag stuff is so easy)
1 medium onion sliced thin with a food processor
1 large green pepper sliced thin in a food processor
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup white vinegar
1 tbs. dry mustard
1 tsp. celery seed
1 tsp. salt

Place cabbage, sliced onion and sliced pepper in a bowl.
In a medium saucepan, bring the rest of the ingredients to a boil.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.
Remove from heat and allow to cool 10 minutes.  Pour hot mixture over cabbage in bowl.  MIx well.  Cover and refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.  Will keep for 7 days in the refrigerator.  I like to add about half a bag of a third bag of  angel hair slaw to the bowl and mix in about an hour before serving.  It adds extra crunch. I do not recommend using the slaw mix with the carrots and/or red cabbage.  It gives the slaw a funky taste.  Just use regular cabbage or angel hair slaw in the bags.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Grilled Eggplant Salad

2 - 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large or 2 medium sized eggplants cut into round slices
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
3 ounces goat cheese, crumbled (or more if you love goat cheese like we do)
1/3 cup basil, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped mint (optional)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
 Preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Drizzle the olive oil over the slices of eggplant and toss to coat. Grill the eggplants until tender and grill marks appear, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Place the eggplants side-by-side on a serving platter. Sprinkle with the pine nuts, goat cheese, basil, and mint. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.