Almanac 15

Huh. Haven't written one of these in a while.

I was not worried a lick about frost when I went to bed last night. Not a lick.

Before we sat on the couch to knit ourselves to sleep, Erin told me to step outside and look at the sky.

"Which guy?" I replied. (she secretly loves this joke)

I stepped out on the porch and was greeted by a rising orange moon, just past full. A clear, huge sky sprawled overhead -- a sky so black, it was blue.

I breathed in the night air. Cool. Refreshing.


I woke up this morning to zero degrees Celsius. 

Frost on the grass. Frost on the roof. Frost on my precious garden. Frost on the two dozen ripe tomatoes I'd left on the picnic table in order to save room in the kitchen.

I splashed some water on the tomatoes and brought them inside. I might have well have smeared them with mayonnaise for all the good it did them.

Later, I received a phone call from the ghosts of four generations of my Atkinson tomato-farming ancestors, reaming me out for relying on the weather man to predict the end of the season. Lucky for me, my Trueblood/Edwards ancestors were more positive about the whole thing. And, they have e-mail.

Grandma T's Chili Sauce Recipe (originally Great Grandma Edward's, I believe)
approx. 24 Ripe Tomatoes
1 bunch celery
4 onions
4 sweet peppers (green, red, whatever you have)
4 Tablespoons salt
3 c. white sugar
4 cups white vinegar
3 tablespoons mixed pickling spices tied in a piece of cotton

Peel the tomatoes, chop the veggies, add the salt, sugar, vinegar and mix well.  Drop in the bag of spices.
Bring to a boil - stirring several times right to the bottom of the pot to keep the mixture from sticking to the pot.  Simmer for many hours until the sauce is to the consistency of your liking.  Remove the spice bag and Can into sterilized pint jars and lids, though you could probably freeze it in plastic containers.

You can double the recipe if you have lots of tomatoes.



Rob Hutten said...


No chilis?

Unknown said...

Hutton is banned for mocking my ancestors.

"Chilli", if you must know, is a METAPHOR.

Rob Hutten said...

All I know is it's gotta be harsh to have your ancestors' cooking dissed for blandness by a Dutch guy.

Unknown said...

Hutton! I thought I banned you.

Ban! Ban!

Rob Hutten said...

Apparently you banned someone named "Hutton".


Unknown said...

Um, I was, uh, talking to someone else. Someone else named Hutton.

Jordan said...

You know, for years I really thought Jimi Hendirx was singing "Excuse me, while I kiss this guy." Really.

Rob Hutten said...

Until today I was certain that the second verse of "Amazing Grace" went "Now gooooo and kiiiillll your neeeeiiiiighbours alllll..."

Boy, was I red!

Unknown said...

You mean -- that's not the lyric?