Tuesday, September 13, 2011

End of Summer Recipes

Tomato Powder - Dehydrator. Photo by Axe
Photo by Axe from food.com
As we are very quickly approaching the end of the summer, our gardens and supermarkets are giving us the last of their bounty. Right about now a lot of people have tomatoes and squash (zucchini and yellow) coming out of their ears! I wanted to share a few recipes to help with the abundance. For tomatoes, if you're into canning, you can just plainly can your tomatoes. You can also make marinara, salsa or pizza sauce! If you're not into canning, you can still make marinara or pizza sauce and freeze it. You can pre-measure into containers or zip locks, or use ice cube trays for easy measurements. Since I don't have a garden yet (not too feasible when you live in an apartment), I don't have tomatoes coming out of my ears. BUT my CSA share has had lots of extra tomatoes, so I've been able to pick extra. I made dried tomatoes that I turned into tomato powder. The recipe calls for using a dehydrator, but you can use your oven as well, just keep the temp. at 150 degrees. What do you do with tomato powder you ask? For one thing, you can substitute it for tomato paste using about 1 rounded teaspoon of powder & 1-2 tablespoons of water. I am pretty pumped about the tomato paste swap. How many times does a recipe call for 1-2 Tablespoons of tomato paste? You have to open a whole can just for that. I freeze the extra, but still, it's annoying. And the tubes of tomato paste are expensive in my opinion. Tomato powder is also great to throw into soups, sauces, bread dough or pizza dough. It's a new ingredient to me, but it seems very multifunctional. If you like fresh tomatoes, try Marinated Tomato Salad with Herbs. I do not like fresh tomatoes, but my husband does. I tried to like them. I try every year or so, and it just doesn't work for me. I will eat salsa, tomato products and canned/cooked tomatoes, but I would prefer not to have anything to do with a fresh tomato on any of my food thankyouverymuch.

Recipe photo
Photo from KingArthurFlour.com
Zucchini though... I love it! My parents grow it, and I used to get tons from them every year, but they went ahead and moved 5 hours away, so there goes my zucchini excess. I digress. Anyway, I love zucchini so I buy it quite often. I love it just simply sauteed with olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes. It's also delicious breaded in egg, then flour, then fried in oil (or bacon grease if you're feelin' crazy). It's also great stuffed. One of my favorite recipes for it is my Mom's, you can find that at the end of this post. Another great stuffed squash recipe is on Food Network's website, it's from Giada DeLaurentiis and it's fantastic. My new fave recipe for zucchini is zucchini fries, and they're baked not fried! We're having them for dinner with fish tonight. So so yummy, and so so easy. Another great, fresh tasting recipe is Marinaded Squash, also from my fave Giada.

Marshi's Stuffed Squash

1 LB ground beef
1 onion, minced
2 medium tomatoes, peeled and finely diced
4 mushrooms, minced
1 package Lawrey's spaghetti mix
1/2 cup Colby jack, shredded
1 T Parmesan
6 medium/large zucchini, halved and hollowed out with a spoon. Leave about a centimeter around the inside.

Heat a pan over medium heat, cook ground beef and onion until beef is cooked through. In a large bowl, mix the ground beef and onion with the tomatoes, mushrooms spaghetti mix, and both cheeses.

Put beef mixture into zucchini halves. Bake at 400 degrees for 10-20 minutes, or until heated though.

Do you have any favorite squash or tomato recipes? What are they? Let me know if you give any of these a try, I'd love to know what you thought! Until the next post, be blessed!


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