Saturday, August 28, 2010

Farm Magic

A trip to the farm is always better than I imagine it will be. It's not that I imagine it will be dull, exactly. It's just that I never anticipate getting as much incredible knowledge and brilliant ideas as I invariably do, and yesterday was no exception.

I was at the farm yesterday when Liz shared her ketchup with me. Homemade ketchup is a revelation. It tastes so much more fresh and the individual flavors are much more distinct than in the store-bought varieties. Liz had made two varieties, and they were both fabulous - deep intense flavors that would have been luscious with a burger, or just about anything else you could cook up.

Lucky for me, I had a tip that Jamie Oliver has a great ketchup recipe in Jamie at Home, so I looked it up. The good news here is that we are getting many of the ingredients in our CSA boxes, so there isn't much to add to make it all come together. Ketchup is also easy to can (with all the vinegar, you don't have to worry so much), so you can make up a big batch and shelve it for your next barbecue party!

Homemade Tomato Ketchup

1 large onion, chopped
1/2 a fennel bulb, chopped (or, presumably, one small bulb)
1 stick of celery, chopped
olive oil
a thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1/2 a fresh red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
a handful fresh basil, stalks separated from leaves
1 Tbs coriander seeds
2 cloves
1 tsp black pepper
sea salt
2 lbs tomatoes, chopped
3/4 C + 2 Tbs red wine vinegar
1/3 C brown sugar

Put all ingredients, onion through sea salt, into a large pan and saute on low for 10 - 15 mins.

Add tomatoes and 1 1/2 C water and bring to a boil. Simmer until liquid is reduced by half.

Add basil leaves then blend the sauce in a food processor. Force the pulp through a fine mesh sieve twice. Place sauce into a clean pan and add vinegar and sugar. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce becomes the consistency of ketchup.

- Christiana Thomas

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Community Supported Agriculture

Support Locally Grown Food

There is plenty of gozo at Rio Gozo Farm. That is JOY in Spanish and joy is one of the most dependable products we have. Gozo is commonly found in gardens and farms. Once you get a little gozo up and going it is very tolerant of most pests, withstands dry periods, and grows with a modicum of fertilizer. After gozo becomes a staple of one's diet, it goes with about anything. Actually folks crave it so much it is a wonder everyone does not have a patch of it growing close at hand. Grab up some gozo and get with the flow.