Posts Tagged ‘tomatoes

02
Aug
18

dried tomatoes

Now that tomato harvest is in full swing, one way of preserving them for future use is by slicing and drying them. Some suggest seasoning the tomatoes before drying, I did not.

  • Method 1 was placing the tomatoes in a parchment paper lined tray in the oven, the gas pilot keeps the oven at about 100 degrees farenheit. Very good results in about 24 hours.
  • Method 2 was placing the tray , covered with a sheet of plexiglass, in direct sunlight. The resulting water from the tomatoes was trapped so holes were drilled for ventilation. But even with the drilled holes for ventilation, the water vapor was till present. Ultimately, an enclosure should be constructed bigger than the tray alone with adequate ventilation.

I’ve  dried about 3 trays to date, of the tomatoes. Their flavor is very concentrated, the dried tomato could be processed onto a powder if necessary and the uses for dried tomato are many in recipes. Since drying is relatively easy, there is a cost savings if one would buy them outright.

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the dried result

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stored in a small mason jar, some recommend covering the dried tomato with oil.

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plexiglass covered tray for outdoor sun drying.

 

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Even with the holes drilled the moisture collects, maybe no cover at all.

In a way it’s ironic that some of the water put into the growing cycle of tomato  is removed by drying, for preservation. I don’t can tomatoes (water bath method), but if there is an oversupply not used during peak ripeness, I may blanch peel and freeze them.

24
Jul
18

The Garden update/ tomato review

The mid summer doldrums are with us, hot,  balmy and humid weather. The nights are cool. The hydroponic tomatoes and soil grown tomatoes continue. The hydro tomatoes have ceased to grow, some of the foliage browning and dry,  the formed fruit continued to ripen. Some fruit harvested. Most likely a root temperature issue, too hot ! Planning either year round indoor growing or different vegetable next year for hydroponic system.

The soil based tomato plant has thrived still providing new fruit, the first formed fruit ripened and picked. Backed off the the nutrients and since the last rains some watering just from the rain barrel some times twice a day.

 

Two different varieties, Roni and Sakura, the Roni should be the larger of the two. Seeds sourced from High Mowing Organic.

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July 16

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July 16

Soil based plant. July 23 2018

Hydroponic Deep water culture, outdoor July  23

Uses so far. Salsa. Not shown, tomato sauce for gnocchi, salsa || with chicken and corn chips.

Pizza, hot weather , so baked in the convention oven. Maybe grille outdoor later in the season.


We usually hardly ever buy tomatos from the store , too many disappointments , once you taste them from the vine fresh. The taste of ours are excellent tomato taste, it seems they are at peak sweetness 24 hours after picking. Still good after that robust tomato flavor, no mealy texture, would like to dry some for storage but I think most will be eaten. A delicacy.

14
May
18

Hydroponic update

WTF


I was considering transplanting some of the tomato plants, someone beat me to it apparently .

18
Apr
18

recent meals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tomatillo Salsa

 

Rice and beans, Broccoli, and my daughter’s recipe of breaded chicken breast

Rice and bean salad

Fresh bread, all purpose, spent grain, and rice flour combination

Chicken vegetable soup with sausage dumplings.

 

Eggplant, meatball and mozzarella

 

12
Mar
18

Chicken Curry

From Food 52 Meera Sodha’s Mum’s Chicken Curry

  • A spicy chicken dish , I scaled the recipe in half and used 2 chicken thighs , bone in with the skin.
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter and 1/2 tablespoon oil (canola, olive etc.)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 , 1 and 3/4 inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 large onion finely diced
  • 1, 1 and 1/4 inch ginger root, peeled and grated
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 fresh chilis, green
  • salt
  • 3 or 4  oz strained tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoon yogurt, plain whole milk
  • 1 lb or so chicken, the thighs are had were large so two we close to 1 lb
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons ground almonds
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala

No surprises here, this is  similar to a braised dish and no marination or browning of the chicken is required. As always if you measure and prep the ingredients, the recipe goes easy.

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I found these plastic sheets for cutting at the local Job lot, inexpensive and easy to clean plus the diced ingredients can be funnelled right into the pan. Cumin seeds are on the order list, none in stock so I used ground cumin for the saute step.

So in the butter and oil sputter the cumin seeds and cinnamon. Add all the onion and cook till very golden, low medium heat, 10 to 12 minutes. Pound up the chilis and ginger and garlic in a pestle to a course paste, very fragrant ! Add it to the onion mixture. cook for additional 2 minutes.

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Now add the paste just cook the following a few minutes layering the ingredients.

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Now go with the tomato paste , ground cumin, turmeric, salt to preference and whisk in the yoghurt, cook till heated through. IMG_4516 Add the chicken. IMG_4520

Lid the pan and slow simmer about 30 minutes or until the chicken pieces are done. Finish with the final addition of the ground nuts and garam masala. Flat breads or rice is a good side.

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Tomato is the dominate flavor with a spicy finish not too hot. The curry is rather thick and towards the end of the recipe before the chicken was added, I added additional water. Its may be due to the fact or store bought yogurt is thick with no liquid.

I would probably go with more ginger and garlic, but with these many individual flavors additions, it also depends on the quality and freshness of the spices and herbs utilized that could affect the ratio and your preferences.

14
Oct
17

coconut curry shrimp

Coconut and coconut milk is something I’ve been incorporating into my meal preparation. Yes, if you look it up there are numerous health claims about what it does but again I try not to get swayed by only by the published health benefits of certain foods. As history proves fads and “new studies” contribute to the sometime misinformation about certain foods and there are surely plenty of healthy types of diets out there to follow. Usually I am open to different types of recipes that provide different types of ingredients, again moderation is the key and often whats proposed to be good for someone may not be your cup of tea. Flavor is a key factor whether it’s a vegan dish or a 1 1/2 inch thick porterhouse steak.

Back to the recipe, as I learn from another blogger some coconut and water is all you need to make a coconut milk type liquid.

prep for saute: ginger,onion, dried hot red pepper,parsley

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Let’s make the coconut milk , some shredded coconut, a splash of heavy cream, and water processed in a food processor. The heavy cream gives the fluid some clumps which will cook smooth later.

Saute the prepped ingredients.

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Meanwhile since I have frozen shrimp, thaw in water.

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Added fresh home-grown hydroponic tomatoes  (I don’t really brag that often)

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Cook and mash tomato… you can reinforce  the mix with added ginger and garlic pastes.

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Added some habernaro paste, very concentrated

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spices, curry powder and cardamom powder

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Add the coconut milk mixture, heat to a slight boil, add the shrimp, cook only a few minutes at simmer, cover and turn off heat and set aside so residual heat will finish cooking shrimp.

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Serve over rice, garnish with parsley or coriander

20
Aug
17

hydroponic update

Much has changed since the last posting about hydroponics, the one tomato plant remaining in the DWC since the removal of the other plantings that failed, has enjoyed a revival. The one plant several feet bare from the bottom to some blossoms at the top, has sprung growth all along the main stem.

One idea that was illustrated to me by http://www.hydroponics.com.au/  (in one of their online magazines) was the method of where tomatoes grow to excessive length, that they are lowered and then trained to grow horizontally. since the new growth spurt caused the plant to grow beyond the top of the tomato tower, I did drop, and resecure the plant now winding it around the poles and suspending it with the twine and clamps.

Pictures tell the story better than description.

(Small additional greens have been started and placed in 2 of the net pots.)

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Thats the air pump in the background , runs 24/7, housed in a plastic container.

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