Maybe I need a farmer’s market friend … one who can split the spoils with me to avoid, well, spoils.
Apparently, the deals on tomatoes and potatoes have just been too great - I’m up to my ears in them and have been frantically scouring the interwebs for ways to preserve them before they go bad. Thanks to the fruits of my Internet search, I feel a lot less pressure to use the food in my house. I seriously cannot stress enough how much I HATE throwing away food!
First, I know how to preserve tomatoes, but with the temps being what they are, I just can’t muster the energy to get out the canning stuff, peel the tomatoes, pack them in jars, and process them. It gets hot in the kitchen with all that boiling! I know, I know, lame … but I discovered a new recipe from my lameness: Tomatoes Gratin! Doesn’t that sound amazing? (No, Mom, not au gratin … Google it!) Layers of sliced tomato, cheese, basil and a topping of toasted bread crumbs. I know, your mouth is watering like mine did when I saw the recipe! It’s REALLY easy to make, too.
- 4 medium to large tomatoes
- Shredded cheese
- 6 leaves of Basil
- 2 pieces bread, toasted and turned into crumbs (you can use the blender for this, but do it with bread and toast the crumbs on a cookie sheet)
- Optional: salt and pepper
- Preheat over to 450 (thank goodness this only takes about 20 minutes - the kitchen is gonna get hot!)
- Spray medium casserole dish with non-stick spray.
- Slice tomatoes into ½ inch slices.
- Layer tomatoes, cheese, and basil in casserole dish (add salt and pepper, if you wish, to each layer).
- Bake ten minutes
- Remove from oven, top with bread crumbs, return to oven.
- Cook 10 more minutes.
- Serve immediately
Also, since I have about 2 pounds of potatoes left from last week and a fridge that is already overflowing with leftovers and side dishes, I was thrilled to learn how to make frozen french fries. It’s so easy, I can’t believe I didn’t know it before.
Home-Frozen French Fries
- Cut potatoes into French fry-like strips.
- Simmer in salted water until half cooked.
- Drain well, then place in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Stick in freezer.
- Once frozen solid, transfer to bag and remove as much air as possible.
- Store in freezer (duh!).
- When you’re ready to cook them, toss the fries with some oil (just pour it in the bag and shake, shake, shake!
- Place single layer on baking sheet and cook at 425 for 15-20 minutes. Turn occasionally, and when they’re a lovely brown, you know they are done!