Week 13 - 14 - Pasta 'Primaspacho'

[Posted by Ruth]
Wrapping up week 13 and in the midst of yet another heat wave, I did a sauce earlier this week that wound up being very good both hot and cold.  It's kind of the love child of Pasta Primavera and Gazpacho.

This recipe represents what I had kicking around near the end of Week 13 but you can really add any late summer vegetable you like here.  The key is to keep the cooking to a minimum to maintain the color and crispness as well as the fresh taste.

Pasta 'Primaspacho'
Serve hot over pasta as or as a cold soup.  This makes a large batch, enough for a hot meal 1 night, a cold meal the next night and some to put away to have another time

2 Zucchini, cubed
2 Summer Squash cubed
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, crushed
4 ears corn, cut from cob
Olive oil
4-6 cups peeled, roughly chopped ripe tomatoes, seeded as well if they're very juicy
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp thyme
1 T honey
Salt, Pepper
Fresh basil, mozzarella cubes or shaved Parmesan and red pepper flakes as desired for garnish.

Al dente pasta if serving hot.

Heat oil in large heavy pan.  Gently saute the onions and garlic until garlic is fragrant.  Add Zucchini and squash and cook over medium heat until it begins to lose its raw appearance.  Stir in the corn, tomatoes, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper.  Cook until the vegetables are tender but still a have some bite to them and some of the tomato liquid had evaporated.  Stir in the honey.  If serving hot, place pasta in deep bowls and top with sauce and cheese, basil and red pepper flakes, if using.  It will be a soupy sauce so it's best served with a smaller pasta and spoons.  If serving cold, serve as a cold soup with the same garnishes.  You can place a slice of French or Italian bread in the bottom of the soup bowl before serving if you like to absorb some of the liquid and thicken it a bit.  We really liked it hot the first night but both liked it even better cold the second night.

Here, by the way, is the Week 14 haul.  There are actually 12 ears of corn, but they are not all in the shot.  It was just too hot to unpack them all!

 This is the first time I've been disappointed with the corn.  I'm not sure if it's the variety or that it's late in the season.  The ears are all very large and the two that we had last night, just quickly boiled and served, were starchy and didn't have much flavor.  The remaining ears will need some jazzing up this week.


Week 13 - Extra Tomatoes

[Posted by Ruth]

In addition to this week's terrific looking haul...(loved getting some fennel and thought the tiny watermelon was the cutest thing ever)

I opted to buy a 1/2 bushel of tomatoes as well.  Time for some canning.  Although I generally use recipes as a jumping off point the one place I follow directions exactly is when putting food up.  The book I love and trust is "Putting Food By" by Janet Greene, Ruth Hertzberg and Beatrice Vaughan.  It's a great resource for canning, freezing, drying, you name it, for just about any fruit or vegetable you can think of.  Whatever book or source you choose, make sure you cross-check the advice and then follow it to the letter.  I used their hot pack method.  The tomatoes were juicy enough that I didn't need to add any juice.  In fact, I had some mostly juicy leftovers to which I added the less than perfect tomatoes and cooked down further for some sauce for later in the week or to put in the freezer.  The 1/2 bushel yielded 7 beautiful quarts of tomatoes in their juice, all well sealed and ready to put in a cool dark place for later in the season when I'm missing the taste of tomatoes.

An unexpected side benefit of this whole process was that I realized all my cool dark places were full of cool dark junk, so I got busy and cleaned out the dog/cat food cabinet.

That accomplished, we deserved a glass of 10 Second Sangria by way of The Bitten Word.  Super quick and easy.  Definitely not a serious drink but then, who needs to be serious on a summer weekend?

10 Second Sangria

Equal parts red wine (pick a fairly fruity one for best results - an inexpensive tempranillo or sangiovese is great here)
and Lemonade soda (I used "European Soda" from Fresh Maket - Sicilian Lemon)