I promise. This will be the last tomato recipe for a good long while! I'm actually getting my fill of these...but summer is here and what better way to appreciate how good we have it now by looking back at an incredibly old recipe that took much more time than we're willing or able to give to food preparation today! I'm all in favor of slow food and meandering down the road of remembrance but my 'reality' is that my kitchen just won't fit the amount of food, fresh vegetables, or fruit called for in most of these heirloom recipes. As long as I have been married I have had a galley kitchen. It's narrow, small and generally only fits one person at a time. If two are in that kitchen the potential for small outbursts of territorial arguments multiply rapidly. It's townhouse living. There are times when a large kitchen is on top of my wish list but then again having a small space forces you to keep only what is necessary. Of course I write this with a pile of food reference books at my feet because my cook book bookcase is 'full'. Oh well.
On to the great green tomato pickle recipe! Whoever happened to have this recipe at one point in time had an incredible vegetable garden - and access to a large variety of spices.
Green Tomato Pickle
1 large peck (or 14 lbs.) green tomatoes
6 onions, 6 peppers without seeds
Slice tomatoes, then chop, not too fine. Put onions and peppers through meat chopper - mix with tomatoes. Sprinkle with one cup of salt and let stand over night. In morning - drain, then boil 15 minutes with two quarts of water and one of vinegar. Drain again. Add to pickle:
2 and 1/4 lbs. granulated sugar
1 quart vinegar
2 Tbsps. cloves
1 Tbsp. allspice
2 Tbsps. ginger
2 Tbsps. mustard
3 Tbsps. cinnamon
1 tsp. cayenne
1/4 lb. white mustard seed
Boil ten minutes and put in cans hot.
Again in this vintage recipe the instruction is to put the ingredients in actual cans which makes me believe that instead of just glass jars there must have been tin cans made just for home canning. There was a time when women got together frequently and helped each other 'put up' food for leaner times. We didn't have the luxury of freezers or large refrigerators so pantries and cellars were put to good use. If you're getting the urge to try your hand at canning please visit CanningAcrossAmerica.com for user friendly step by step instruction. It can be done on a small scale and in a small kitchen! See my July 4th post about strawberry jam!
I promise that my next posts will have nothing to do with tomatoes...I'm pretty sure they will involve some heirloom summer salad ideas. Something cool for these hot and weary days we're having - she says while the air conditioner is humming next to her...
- Danbury, CT
- I'm a full-time substitute teacher and coordinator of CMT's at a large middle school. Married with two grown sons (both redheads)! I'm not afraid of anything! One son just graduated from Central Connecticut State University with a degree in Journalism - he minored in Cinema Studies. The other just began his freshman year at The University of Hartford where he is a student of the Hartford Art School. We are owned by a smelly, old cat, a frenzied dachshund named Otis and a chinchilla!