Pussycats and Pasta Sauce

So that title describes my day. When I started out this morning, I had more tomatoes than I could use. (Note to self: Remember this next year, because it happens this way every year. Come mid-August, the tomatoes will ripen.)

I'm picking them every day now. They are ripening so fast that I pick anything that is beginning to turn and then let them ripen the rest of the way in the house. I have them sorted with the most ripe and ready for processing at the bottom of the image. The most green are at the top. And I didn't use all of them, so I'll be repeating this process in a few days.

This morning I needed to get on with making some pasta sauce, which is a time-intensive process, and I needed to take Gracie to the vet. Poor appointment timing on my part because her appointment fell right in the middle of the day. There wasn't enough time before or after that to go through the whole blanching, peeling, chopping, mixing, boiling, and processing routine. I decided to do the blanching, peeling and chopping part in the morning before her appointment.

I was so happy when I cut into these Super Marzanoes. Look at that...all meat and no seeds. I rarely, if ever, see this variety in nurseries. Mine are grown from seeds I purchase from Territorial Seed, an Oregon company. 

They are a relatively large tomato...about the size and shape of a large poblano pepper. They have been the slowest to ripen, but they are beginning to come on in abundance now.

So I got them all ready to go, and then just put them in a stainless steel bowl in the refrigerator until I could come back. It always makes me feel like The Slasher when I survey my chopped up tomatoes.

When I got home, I mixed in the rest of the ingredients and then boiled like crazy. It took them about an hour and a half to cook down to the right consistency.

This is a simple marinara sauce with some red wine, garlic, basil and parsley. The basil and parsley are also from my garden. The wine is not from my grapes or my vineyard, because, um, we don't have a vineyard.

After that, I ladled, lidded, and processed. My yield today was 3-1/2 quarts.

This is the best thing that comes from growing tomatoes. So yummy. It's what I hope for every time I start my seeds in February...a nice harvest, and enough home-made pasta sauce to get us through the winter and spring. I'm hoping to end up with about eight quarts before we leave on our trip. The rest of the tomatoes won't be ready for a couple of days. Tomorrow, I'll tackle the peaches and make some peach chutney.

As for Gracie, she just needed her immunizations. And since we're briefly crossing into Canada on our trip next month, both kitties needed documentation that they were current in their rabies vaccines. She did fine, but the kitties are never happy about being boxed up and driven down the road. Somehow they survive.

Tonight is my guild meeting, and the reveal of my Blooming Sunflower quilt for the "Initially Yours" challenge. And I need to get a move on if I'm going to get there on time. 

What did you do today?

11 comments from clever and witty friends:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Yummo!! Great use of your day. Hope you have a wonderful guild night.

Kate said...

The sauces looks yummy! Hope you enjoy your guild meeting. They will love your Blooming Sunflower.

crazy quilter said...

Looks so yummy! Glad the harvest is a good one!

Kate said...

Oh, I've been meaning to tell you. Whatever your plans are for the Spokane portion, you have to be through downtown by four p.m. It's construction season and I-90 is at a standstill from exit 277-286 by four. And there's no way around it since our secondary roads suck. And I do mean a standstill - by all reports, it takes an hour to go those nine miles. All I'm charging for this advice is a jar of that sauce right there. ;)

Teresa in Music City said...

Oh my gosh - I'm salivating right here at my computer! I love pasta sauce and yours looks yummy!!!

quiltzyx said...

You are just so saucy! It looks so good & you make it sound so easy.

Hope you had fun at the guild unveiling. August is our Potluck month, and we played Quilt-O. Yes, it's Bingo with quilting terms. I love potlucks!

Give Gracie an extra pet from me for her trials & tribulations day.

Lyndsey said...

Mmmmmm pasta sauce and lots of it. What a great crop you've had. My tomatoes didn't do anywhere near as well but we have enjoyed eating loads of them with salads. I'll just have to start more plants next week.

Well done Gracie for being a brave kitty and having your immunisations. Picasso always kicks up such a fuss.

Nita said...

Fabulous! I've made a note of those Super Marzanoe tomatoes and will look for seeds. It's so exciting to live in a climate where tomatoes grow right outside in the garden. Last night I picked a ripe one for our salad. In the Yukon we could only grow them in the green house. Next year I will plant enough to make sauce and salsa :)

VickiT said...

Oh my gosh, SO jealous. This is the 2nd year we haven't planted any tomatoes. I can't do gardening any longer so we bought some of those free standing containers and added the option of wheels to them. Even that isn't easy for me so my husband did them the past two years. This year we just never got around to getting them started and right now I'm mad at myself. We just had BLT's last week and got tomatoes from the grocery store. ICK! They are just not good at all, even during the middle of summer and they have no excuse to not be good. :(

You'll be busy for awhile with those tomatoes but you'll be happy later this winter for sure.

Jacque said...

You saucy wench! Haha! Will those grow well in my corner of blogland? I love those....so meaty and I bet the sauce is awesome. Let me know what you think....I'm off to check that site. :)

Miachel @ Spiced Curiosity said...

This sounds dee-licious! I love the simple, straightforward recipe. It really makes the fresh tomatoes shine.

Found your amazing blog on Fresh Foods Wednesday!