Tomato Canning Quick Reference Guide

Tomato Canning Guide

When I was canning up tomatoes this past weekend, and I was sick, so I kept double checking things and kinda getting hazy about what the hell I was doing. Moral of the story: do not attempt to can 100 pounds of tomatoes while sick. But as I was shuffling back and forth to my [Continue Reading...]

Can-o-Rama 2013

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

This past weekend was pretty much dedicated to canning. Homebrew Husband and I did this last year (see: Can-o-Rama 2012). Dedicating a solid weekend to putting up staple foods like pickles and tomatoes can be a bit of a whirlwind, but it feels fantastic to take the pantry from nearly-bare to nearly-full in 48 hours. [Continue Reading...]

Stop Throwing Away Free Tomato Sauce

Making Thick Tomato Sauce From Tomato Skins (3)

It has come to my attention that many people are unwittingly throwing away free tomato sauce when they preserve their summer tomatoes. Here’s the thing: like all fruit, the skin of tomato is where much of the natural pectin resides. Pectin is the starch that gives jams their thickness and good tomato sauce its natural, [Continue Reading...]

Can-o-Rama 2012

Can-o-rama 2012 (1)

It’s 1:43 AM Monday as I write this. The past 56 hours have been a Can-o-rama from “where’s-my-coffee?” to way-past-dusk that has precluded the writing of any witty or useful blog posts. I’m eating good cheese with a spoon, too tired even to drink the well-deserved pour of wine next to me. I got nothin’, [Continue Reading...]

Kim Kardashian’s Tomatoes: 5 Thoughts on Blogging

Kim Kardashian loves tomatoes.

Here’s something you might not know about blogging. If I write headlines like these: What Kim Kardashian Can Teach You About Tomatoes 20 Ways to Grow 1,000 Pounds of Vegetables In 10 Minutes A Day Why Overpaying For Seeds Is Costing You More Than Just Money  …there is a huge chance you will click on the [Continue Reading...]

How To Cull The Weak

Tomato Seedling Thinning (8)

Classic new gardener problem: you successfully grew a seedling. You planted it and nurtured it from a little seed and – life doing what it does – it’s flourishing, putting on layers of healthy leaves and growing up well. And now you have to kill it – on purpose. You have to murder your seedling so that other, [Continue Reading...]

Worst Soil Amendment For Tomatoes?

Tomatoes in Self-Watering Containers

Rachel Shadoan is a writer of exceptional wit. I know because she posted a story of gardening loss on the NW Edible Facebook page that was both so terrible and so hilarious that I read it twice. I asked for her permission to share her tale of tomato-growing woe (and lessons learned) here. This story appeared originally on Rachel’s [Continue Reading...]

Lacto-Fermented Salsa

Regular readers may have gleaned (gleaned – ha! harvesting pun!) that Homebrew Husband and I enjoy fermenting stuff. Right at this exact moment, the following is being (deliberately) fermented in our home: 5 gallons blackberry wine 10 gallons of beer (a carboy of pale ale and another of porter) 2 loaves bread dough homemade yogurt 3 [Continue Reading...]

What Am I Going To Do With These Tomato Seedlings?

Despite my limited success with tomatoes, I have yet again found myself with a whole gaggle of seedlings.  I’ve got three flats of tomatoes and peppers; I think there’s 26 individual tomato plants. Goodness knows where I’m going to put them all this year. I’m thinking of trying grow bags placed up on my black asphalt-shingled roof. There’s [Continue Reading...]

Heat Lovers in A Cool Clime: Tomato Dreams and Tomato Delusions

All images in this post are the work of photographer and LA Weekly author Felicia Friesema.  They are used here with her kind permission. Forget sugarplums – at this time of year it’s visions of big, juicy, vine-ripe tomatoes that dance in the gardener’s head. Tomatoes are the quintessential garden edible. The tomato is so culturally ubiquitous – [Continue Reading...]