9.20.2015

Forecast for a Chili Winter


The tomatoes have finally started to ripen! We have been sharing the small cherry tomatoes, and ripening the romas on the windowsill.


There are LOADS of romas on the vines, so as they ripen, I process them for pots of chili. 
First I wash them, then I add them to a rapidly boiling pot of water.


I let them cook about 5 minutes, or until the skin starts to wrinkle, pucker and peel.




I scoop them from the pot with a mesh colander...


…and plunge them into an ice bath til cool.




Then I peel the skins off over the colander (resting in the sink.)



They are so juicy.



I cannot wait to taste them in a big pot of chili on a cool autumn or chilly winter evening.  I package 10 to a bag, remove the air and lay flat to freeze,


Freezer bags work well. I used to use my "Frisper", a machine to remove the air, but it doesn't seem to work anymore. But I still have lots of bags thanks to my mother in law, so I use those, and squeeze out the air.


They freeze beautifully. I hope to freeze at least 10 packages. Two down, eight to go! When ready to use, I place the bags in a bowl or pan of warm water to thaw. The tomatoes will be saucy and flavorful. A perfect compliment to your chili.

*My recipe isn't formal:

Chop and cook one large onion in olive oil. Set aside.
Brown ground beef or ground turkey,
sprinkling with cumin and chili powder as cooking.

 I add the spices many times throughout cooking. 
Add cooked onions to meat.
Add a can of pink and a can of white kidney beans.

Layer spices on again and stir.
Add defrosted tomatoes along with their juice.
Add spices again.

Continue to cook on low and check for flavor.
That's it!

I will add a little salt and pepper before serving.
This is a mild chili. 
My husband adds hot sauce to his before eating.

20 comments:

  1. now this is the kind of forecast I can handle!! yum.

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    Replies
    1. p.s. do you have a favorite chili recipe?

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    2. Thanks Janet….I just added my "recipe". It's simple, with few ingredients.Each of us adds spice as we like it. I love the mild taste.

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    3. I love trying new chili recipes. thank-you!

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  2. I'm glad you've got late tomatoes as well; I just pulled 2 off the vine with half dozen green ones to fry for lunch tomorrow. It's closer and closer to chili weather!

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    Replies
    1. I agree! They are trickling in…I have some HUGE heirlooms just blushing! Cannot wait for my first tomato sandwich of the season!

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  3. Your chili must be over the top delicious! I try to freeze my tomatoes each year too. Definitely the more meaty tomatoes like romas do the best.

    Happy fall.

    Velva

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    Replies
    1. Hi Velva! My chili makes me happy :) Romas are great frozen. They defrost so easily,and sure beats canned tomatoes!

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  4. We grew cherry tomatoes for the first time this year. Maybe next year we will try growing Romas.

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    Replies
    1. They are a pleasure to grow and very versatile!

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  5. I've never tried freezing tomatoes, but I may now. I've canned them before, which is a little more effort, but not much. My favorite way to use them is also in chili. So yummy!

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    Replies
    1. And I have never canned….a bit intimidated!

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  6. Isn't it lovely, to be heading into weather, when such dishes as Chili, and Crock-Pot-Anything, will be appropriate???

    Tessa

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    Replies
    1. I just do not know how to dress in this weather!

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  7. Oh, I do hope the last of my tomatoes ripen before it freezes.

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  8. Replies
    1. Dry fall weather is a perfect time for just that!

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  9. I wish I had more space in my freezer... but having now a small one after 2 years without ANY, I am very grateful for whatever I can manage to freeze! ;) just made two bags of swiss chards... and some jars of sauce with aubergines...
    Your winter meals will be so delicious...
    xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It must be wonderful to have one now! I am icky to have a large fridge after many years of living with an apartment sized one. I have enough for about 5 pots of chili frozen. My goal is enough for 10 pots!We shall see! Ooh I love the thought of saving swiss chard. The cold temps and dry weather have taken mine. I am going to gather some herbs today to save.

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Thanks for chatting!

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