|Crushed tomatoes, tomato "stock" and oven-dried tomatoes|
Whew. It's been a long two days. 53 pounds of tomatoes and far more hours than I care to admit later, I'm finally resting on the couch, enjoying some much needed leisure time.
It all started a few days ago. My mom was visiting from Florida and she and I ventured out to Stoneybrook Organic Farm Market in Hillsboro, Virginia in search of the perfect summer tomatoes. It's about an hour drive, but well worth the trip. I was told their produce is simply gorgeous (and it is!) and better yet, it's all organic (except for a few items provided by other neighboring farms). Once I finished oggling all the fresh fruits and veggies, I remembered my mission: to find a good amount of delightfully ripe tomatoes at a decent price to store away for those months when grocery stores try to pawn off those wretched pale pink and yellowish things as tomatoes. It was then that I discovered the boxes of "scratch and dent" tomatoes for $15 a box. The utterly charming and super helpful gentleman working the counter even weighed several boxes so that I could take home the best deal. We found two boxes, each over 26 pounds. I left with 53 pounds of organic, ripe tomatoes for just $30....less than $0.60 a pound. Score.
Now...what did I do with all those fabulous tomatoes? This will be the subject of my next few posts. I'll be sharing my (often messy, or course) process and all the fabulous final products. As often is the case, I was in a bit over my head...but I'm always game for an adventure in the kitchen. Will you join me?