Saturday, August 6, 2011

Attack of the Killer Tomatoes

Has anyone else ever seen the movie?  It's not exactly Hollywood's finest but it's worth a laugh or two. I wasn't laughing, however, when the heat ripened all of my tomatoes at once this week.  All of them.  Tons of them.

If you've been following my blog for awhile, you probably know that I'm a gardener.  Every year I plant an array of vegetables, and every year I make homemade tomato sauce.  I dry my own basil and oregano and I even grow the onions.  Anyway, it's been a crazy summer and August crept up on me.  I found myself with  a counter covered in plum tomatoes.  How many?  Well, I didn't count them but after I'd blanched, skinned, cored, and diced them it made 48 cups.

So last night I was up until midnight processing 12 quarts of prepared sauce.  I asked myself, "Self, why do you do this?  Surely, there is an easier way.  A jar of sauce, after all, is like $2.99."  I didn't have any answers.  It's a huge time suck.  But to make myself feel better about the time I spent weeding, watering, herb-drying, picking, peeling, coring, chopping, measuring, stirring, and processing (deep breath) so that my family could have fresh, homemade, BPA free, tomato sauce, I'm posting my recipe here so that you too can ponder why I do it every year. 

Ching's Tomato Sauce

1-4 glass red wine

12 cups roma tomatoes, peeled,cored,and chopped
3 medium onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced

3 small cans tomato paste
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried black pepper


Drink wine. Mix everything else together in the biggest pot you own, the one you never use because it takes up too much room in the dishwasher, and simmer for an hour.  Scoop it into canning jars and process in a boiling water bath for 40 minutes. Require family to do some major sucking up each and every time you use prepared sauce. 

Enjoy knowing you are one step closer to domestic goddess. 


  1. Sure, I've seen it. Killer Tomatoes is a cult classic. Funniest trivia I know is that they crashed the helicopter on accident, then kept it in the film because it was the closest thing to a special effect they could have.

  2. Brown sugar! That's the ingredient I hadn't considered.

    I used to feel sorry for my mother when the tomatoes would put on. She would be canning for days. Occasionally, I was around to help her peel all those tomatoes. Sometimes it was peaches. Sometimes it was beets. *shudder* But, in the end, nothing tastes better than homegrown veggies. Mmmm...


  3. Very cool Gen. I grow my own each summer too. I raise them from seeds - actually have baby seedlings now in my little hot house. I make chutney with them, so I know how you feel, yet it is satisfying to see all those jars lined up when I'm done. They last me right through to the next season. Bet your sauce does too!


The very important thoughts of very important people -->

Blog Archive