Friday, August 21, 2015

Making paste

This is what fourteen pounds
of tomatoes look like.
My grandmother always told me, in what I think was an affectionate way, that I was never able to leave well enough alone. What she meant was when faced with the option of just hanging out or the chance to do, I would almost always choose to do something. This has carried onto my adult life and has led to things like making ramen from scratch, coaching a cycling team and, of course, writing books.

This was when I figured out
that I needed a food mill.
The most recent example of not knowing when to leave well enough alone came last weekend, when I got it into my head to make tomato paste. You are probably wondering why I would make tomato paste when it's possible to buy perfectly good tomato paste but that - as evidenced by my obsession with making jam - has never really stopped me from doing something. Plus, I thought that homemade tomato paste would taste better than the store bought stuff.

This is my sous-chef assembling
the food mill at the speed of light.
Fourteen pounds of tomatoes, hours of simmering, an emergency trip to Whisk to get a food mill (ProTip - it's really, really hard to push tomatoes through a fine mesh strainer with a spoon, even if the internet tells you that it's possible) and 45 minutes of processing later, I had seven quarter-pint jars of tomato paste. And it was delicious.
And this is what I made. Yum yum!

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