Posts Tagged Tomatoes


14 November 2009
1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
1 cup chopped gourmet sausage (I use Chicken and Apple Sausages)
2 cups tomatoes, chopped
2 cups tomato juice (I used fresh squeezed)
2 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed (I use a coffee mill)
1 tbs. oregano
1 tbs. sugar
2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 3/4 cups Ricotta Cheese (12 – 16 oz)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg
4 cups shredded mozzarella (1 lb.)
12 lasagna noodles

1. In a large saucepan, over medium heat, brown beef.  Drain and set aside.  Return pan to heat, and cook onion until translucent.  Add sausage, and saute until cooked through.

2. Return beef to pan with sausage/onion mixture, and add tomatoes, tomato juice, tomato paste, garlic, basil, fennel, oregano, sugar, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat until mixture reaches a boil, then simmer on low heat for 1 hour, stirring every so often.

I used tomato juice left over from a recipe I made earlier in the week

3. If using “No Boil” noodles, skip this step! Boil a large pot of salted water, add noodles and cook until al dente (8 – 10 minutes).  Drain and rinse noodles – using cold water. Place on wax paper until ready to use.

4. In a medium bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, 1/2 tsp. salt, and Parmesan cheese.

5. In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish, spread 1 cup tomato sauce.  Cover with 4 noodles (you’ll want to over lap them a little, but don’t worry about any gaps on the edges). Cover these noodles with about a third of the remain sauce, and top with Mozzarella cheese.  Next, spread 1/2 of the ricotta mixture, topped with another layer of 4 noodles.  Spread another layer of tomato sauce, followed by the remaining ricotta, and a layer of cheese. Top with one more layer of noodles followed by tomato sauce and mozzarella.

6. Preheat oven to 350°. Cover with foil (spray with cooking spray to prevent it from sticking), and bake in a preheated oven for 25 – 30 minutes.  Remove foil, and cook for an additional 25 minutes, or until cheese is golden and bubbly.  Allow to cool for 10 -15 minutes before serving.


12 November 2009

This took the entire day, and believe it or not produced only 4 tiny jars of BBQ sauce – there has to be a better way!

Recipe taken from Ball’s Website

20 cups chopped cored peeled tomatoes (about 21 medium)
 2 cups finely chopped onions (about 3 to 4 medium)
 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
 1 Tbsp hot pepper flakes
 1 Tbsp celery seeds
 1-1/2 cups lightly packed brown sugar
 1 cup white vinegar
 1/3 cup lemon juice
 2 Tbsp salt
 1-1/2 Tbsp ground mace or nutmeg
 1 Tbsp dry mustard
 1 tsp ground ginger
 1 tsp ground cinnamon
 3 (16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands


1.) COMBINE tomatoes, onions, garlic, hot pepper flakes and celery seeds in a large stainless steel saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, cover and boil gently until vegetables are soft, about 30 minutes.

The tomatoes freshly diced

My fingers after peeling and dicing all those tomatoes!

All the veggies simmering until soft

2.) TRANSFER mixture, working in batches, to a sieve placed over a glass or stainless steel bowl and press with the back of a spoon to extract all the liquid and pulp. This can also be done using a food mill. Discard solids.

the “solids” before they were discarded

3.) RETURN liquid and pulp to saucepan. Add brown sugar, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, mace, mustard, ginger and cinnamon. Return to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring frequently, until mixture is thickened to the consistency of a thin commercial barbecue sauce, about 30 minutes.

What’s left to boil down for the sauce

4.) PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside. 

The end product…amazing when you remember it started out like this:

5.) LADLE hot sauce into hot jars leaving 1/2 inc

h headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight. 

6.) PROCESS jars in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed. 

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