Sunday, August 26, 2012

Roasted Tomato Sauce


Towards the end of summer, my dad's garden always has an overabundance of ripe tomatoes.  He dropped off about 20 at my apartment and the only way I could think of using them up was to make some tomato sauce.  I made two kinds: a rustic roasted tomato sauce and a more sophisticated tomato sauce with white wine.  Here I'll present the roasted tomato sauce. I used eight tomatoes for this sauce.

First I cut the tomatoes into one inch chunks.


Then I mixed up fresh basil, olive oil, and garlic...  


...and tossed it with the chopped tomatoes.


Next I roasted the herbed tomatoes in a warm (325 degrees) oven for about two hours. After two hours, I increased the heat to 400 degrees and cooked them for another half hour.  The roasting instructions came from Alton Brown's recipe here


Once the tomatoes were nice and roasted, starting to get crisp around the edges, I let them cool.  To turn the tomatoes into the sauce, I blended them using my stick blender.  I left a few tomato chunks to give the sauce a rustic feel.  Though this picture is pretty blah, this sauce was awesome.  It made enough for one meal of pasta and broccoli shown above and an extra quart that I froze for later, when fresh garden tomatoes are no longer available.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Sweet Potato and Beet Hash Browns


With the rest of my beets, I decided to make beet hash browns.  Again, here I essentially treated the beets as potatoes, and actually mixed them with some sweet potatoes.  I started with one sweet potato and two beets:


To make the hash browns, I chopped the potatoes and beets into approximately 1/2 inch pieces and sauted them in a pan with olive oil, onion, salt and pepper until soft.

I ate them with fried eggs.  These sweet potato and beet hash browns were heavier than normal potato hash browns, but had a ton of visual interest and interesting texture.  I thought this was a great way to use up some beets.  But beware, this makes a lot of food. Hope you're hungry!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Oven roasted beets

Earlier in the summer my aunt gave me some beets from the farmers market.  I had never eaten beets before, much less cooked them, so I searched around the internet for some recipes.  My first beet treat was oven roasted beets.  Basically, I pretended that I was making oven roasted potatoes but used beets instead.  Here are the four golden beets I used, already trimmed.


When I cut them open I noticed that they had really neat designs on the inside, kind of ling the rings on an old tree:

I sliced the beets into chunks that were approximately 1" big.  Then I tossed them in olive oil, cumin, and cayenne pepper and baked them in the oven.


The beets turned out nice and crisp, just like oven roasted potatoes should.  They were quite tasty--like potatoes, but a little earthier, with more flavor.  I assume more nutrients too, but I haven't looked that one up...