Tag Archives: tomato

Vegan Vegetable Masala Soup

IMG_13762 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 onion; diced
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 celery stalk; diced
1 carrot; diced
1″ piece fresh ginger; minced
2 cloves garlic; crushed
1 Tablespoon garam masala
2 cups crushed tomatoes (in season use fresh tomatoes; diced)
2 cups water

Preheat a heavy bottomed soup pot over medium-low heat. Add coconut oil, onion and sea salt. Cover and saute 5 minutes. Add celery and carrots, stir, cover and saute an additional 5 minutes. Add ginger, garlic and garam masala, stir, cover and saute another 5 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes and simmer for 30 minutes. Add water, increase heat to boil, reduce heat and simmer an additional 30 minutes.

While the soup is cooking/simmering prepare the rest of the meal. I served vegan baked potatoes and salad but a sandwich would be wonderful too.


End of the Season Green Tomato Ketchup

8 quarts green tomatoes trimmed and cut into chunks)
2 onions; chopped
2 cloves garlic; chopped
1 cup water
1 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons natural sea salt (no iodine or anti-caking agents)
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
In a large stock pot bring the chopped tomatoes, onions, garlic and water to a boil and cook for 30 minutes (until the tomatoes are soft) stirring occasionally. Allow the cooked tomatoes to cool then process using a food mill* to discard the seeds and skin and reserve the strained cooked green tomatoes.
*If you don’t have a food mill – Turn off heat and puree with a stainless steel immersion blender or allow to cool and puree in batches in a countertop blender/food processor. Use the back of a wooden spoon to press the puree through a sieve over a large bowl to separate the skins and seeds from the pulp and liquid.

Return the strained tomato puree to the large cook pot, add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, cook at a slow boil (reduce heat if necessary) stirring occasionally for several hours to reduce the mixture to a ketchup consistency. Depending on your tomato variety and desired consistency, I reduced mine by half. Be patient. You don’t need to watch the pot the whole time. Frequent check-ins while working on something else is perfectly fine.

This recipe yielded 10 half-pint jars for me but again, this can vary with tomato variety and final consistency. Prepare jars (more than you think as you can always use them another time but if you don’t have them when you need them that’s worse). Place jars in  a canning pot, cover with water, add 2 Tablespoons of white vinegar (optional, it keeps the jars “clear” if you have hard water), bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes to sterilize. Turn off heat and leave jars in the hot water till ready to use.

Wash new lids.

Fill each jar to 1/2 inch from the rim. Wipe rims with a clean damp piece of paper towel. Put lids in place and secure with the rims. Place finger tightened jars into the canning pot with the still hot water, bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer for 10 minutes and allow to cool in the hot water bath. Remove jars from hot water bath. Be sure that the jars have sealed, there should be no play when pushing on the lid. Ready to enjoy or store.

Mexican Style Black Rice and White Bean Salad

IMG_01731 cup dry small white beans; soaked 4-8 hours, rinsed, cooked till tender and rinsed OR 3 cups canned
1 cup black rice; soaked 1-8 hours, rinsed and cooked
1 cup fresh cilantro; chopped
3 scallions; chopped
1 red/orange/yellow bell pepper OR 4 small sweet peppers; chopped
1 cup grape tomatoes; sliced
1 clove garlic; crushed
2 avocados; cubed
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
pinch fresh ground black pepper
pinch ground cumin
2 Tablespoons fresh pressed lemon and or lime juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 head romaine lettuce; thinly sliced
crushed red pepper flakes; optional to taste
shredded cheddar; optional

Combine first group of ingredients in a large glass or ceramic bowl.

Serve over lettuce and sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes and shredded cheddar if desired.

20 Days After Planting, the First “Real” Tomato Leaves Appear

DSC_0003Three weeks after starting seeds indoors the tomatoes, basil, eggplant, tomatillo and peppers have all sprouted. The sweet Puerto Rican peppers were the last to sprout, the final one just pushing at the earth this morning. I have been watering each pot as needed, after it dries a bit but not all the way through (you would think they would dry at the same rate, but they do not) and turning the trays 180 degrees each day to try and even out the light from the windows so the plants grow straight. I will continue this daily routine until the days get warm enough to start hardening off the plants outdoors. The tomatoes are starting to grow their first “real” leaves.

Peppers are Popping

2 weeks after planting my patience pays off:
DSC_0012eggplants are up,
DSC_0017peppers are popping,
DSC_0019and the plastic is removed from the growing tomato plants.

I will continue to monitor plant trays daily to rotate as they reach for the light, water with a gentle mist when the soil begins to dry and remove the plastic once the plants reach and begin to bend against it.

Tomato and Basil Babies

The first of the tomato and basil sprouts have sprung with the first day of spring (along with 4 inches of snow and it’s still flurrying). With a mist of water and plastic to recover the rest will start to pop during week 2. There is no sign of life in the pepper pots but that is to be expected. In another week I should have the first pepper sprout. So for now, I will keep monitoring the trays daily and misting with water as needed.
DSC_0080 DSC_0083

Vegan Indian Inspired Stew with Fauxneer over Brown Basmati Rice

DSC_0020Brown Basmati Rice
1 1/2 cups brown basmati rice
2 cups water
1/4 teaspoons sea salt
1 Tablespoon canola oil

Soak the rice for at least 1 hour and up to 8- Pour rice into a medium sized bowl and add enough water to cover the rice by 2 inches and set aside. Meanwhile prepare the stew (or go to work and return home to prepare the stew).

Indian Inspired Stew with Tofu (fauxneer)
3 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 onion; chopped
1 1/2 inch piece fresh ginger; peeled and thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic; crushed
1 celery stalk;cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 carrot; cut into 1/4 inch thick discs
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 Turkish bay leaf
1 cup tomato sauce
4 cups water
1 large/2 small potatoes; peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes

1 16 oz package extra firm tofu; cut into 1/2 inch cubes

optional crushed red pepper flakes

Preheat a large pot over medium heat. Saute onion in coconut oil for 5 minutes with lid on. Add the ginger, garlic, celery and carrot, stir and continue sauteing for 5 more minutes with lid on. Add all spices except the bay leaf and 2 Tablespoons of water, stir and saute for 10 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients (except tofu), bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.

Cook the brown basmati rice- Pour the rice and water into a wire mesh sieve to drain the soaking water. Rinse well with water and allow to drain for 10-20 minutes. Combine the rice, water, salt and oil in a medium sized pot. Bring to a boil reduce heat and simmer about 20 minutes. Once all the water has been absorbed it is done. Remove from heat and allow to “rest” with lid on for 10 minutes.

Remove bay leaf. Blend stew using an immersion blender (or classic countertop blender) until creamy. Stir in the tofu bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Fluff the rice with a fork and serve the stew over the brown basmati rice. Salt to taste and sprinkle with crushed red peppers if desired. (We had a not so traditional leafy green salad on the side.)