Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Days of Reckoning

It's so much fun to sow the seeds. Exciting to watch them sprout and grow. You leap with joy as the first fruits are harvested... but there's always the inevitable day of reckoning when you have to start canning. I have more tomatoes than I need and my neighbors and friends have had their fill. Time to put up.

My favorite part is the knowledge that every single ingredient was picked the day it was canned. And it is all from my own garden (ok, except for the Port wine and olive oil that I added.) The garlic, onion, basil, marjoram, parsley, peppers, celery and the tomatoes were all grown in my backyard organically. 

It's a long, steamy exasperating day. But there are moments. Like when the aroma from the sauteed onion and garlic fills the room.

Or that first chef's sip of the tomato sauce and you realize this is a thousand times better than anything you've ever been served in a restaurant. That's when the magic begins. 

You tweak your recipe and sterilize your jars and know you are about to put up part of the summer that will wow you in the winter.

I made two batches of tomato sauce with the first wave of the harvest - yellow and red. I love the yellow tomato sauce in lentil soups. The red sauce I'll save for lasagna, creamed rose pastas or pizzas.

Can't wait to open a jar.

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