Thursday, September 1, 2011


My in-laws are out-of-town so they told us we could help ourselves to any veggies in their garden. A few days ago, I loaded the kids up and set out to pick tomatoes and whatever else we might find. Before my mother-in-law left, she worked hard to pick tomatoes, zucchini, and peaches, then process and preserve them in various ways (kindly sharing some with us). Still, when I arrived at their house, there were plenty of tomatoes for the picking.

Lillian sat in her stroller while Levi and I picked. Most of the grape tomatoes Levi picked ended up in his tummy, but I filled two bags. I also got quite a few Roma tomatoes and one big zucchini. My plan for the tomatoes was to make spaghetti sauce and diced tomatoes and freeze them.

Today I tackled the grape tomatoes and made them into spaghetti sauce.

I didn't really have a recipe, just a basic idea of how to make sauce. I started by dicing them, which took quite a while since they're little. I didn't worry about removing skins or seeds like some recipes call for.

This is about 2/3 of them.

Then, I sauteed a little garlic in some olive oil and added my diced tomatoes.

After that, I allowed the tomatoes to simmer and cook down. I added salt, pepper, basil, oregano, and parsley.

Once it was cooled, I put the sauce in quart freezer bags and laid them flat in a pan in the freezer. That way they will be easier to store and take up less space in the freezer. Being the first time I have preserved tomatoes in any way, I was surprise how much they cooked down. I was imagining having a lot of sauce, but I only ended up with 7 cups from at least 3 times that amount of diced tomatoes. Still, I'm sure it will be delicious and it really didn't take that much effort.

Most of the Romas need a little more time to ripen, so I'll let them hang out on my windowsill for a few more days and then make them into frozen diced tomatoes for chili.


  1. I'm up to my eyeballs in tomatoes, too, but I don't have time right now to do anything with them. My mom said you can freeze them whole. I think I'm going to do a little research and try it!

  2. Interesting...let me know what you find out.