A bounty of tomatoes

We were very fortunate this year that a) our garden survived not being watered while we were on vacation and b) that we returned home to a bounty of produce.

French green beans, tomatoes, hot peppers, sweet peppers, snow peas, cucumbers, cantaloupe and acorn squash (can't wait for those last two to be ready for harvest!).

As much as we love tomatoes, there is only so much one person can eat at one time!

I made a delicious first batch of gazpacho before we went away - it tasted just as fresh as the garden.  Drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and some fleur de sel, we let it sit overnight in the refrigerator and had it as a starter before our dinner.  I love gazpacho!

I got home last night to find that Dale had collected yet another bowl of tomatoes - we are getting quite a yield from only four plants!!  Meanwhile, there were a few that were almost past their peak.  First thing that came through my mind?  Sauce!

Using my Vita-Mix (I LOVE this blender!!!), I pureed a mix of types of tomatoes and threw in a hot pepper just for fun.  The mixture was a lovely dark rose colour - not red, not yet.  I passed the 6 cups of pureed tomatoes through the fine setting of my food mill to get out the little bits of skin and seeds.

I heated 2 tb of extra virgin olive oil, then added the tomato passata and simmered the mixture for about 1 hour, partially covered, over low heat.  The mixture reduced by half and thickened up quite nicely.  At the end I seasoned with salt and pepper and added 1 tb of dried oregano.  It had turned a lovely shade of red - just how I imagined it would.

It's now in the freezer, soon to be joined by some more of its kin :-)

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