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Old 15th April 2012, 05:24 PM   #871
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When i was a kid the two most enjoyable things in life were -- a tomato grown by my mom or grandmom, picked from the vine, cut in 1/2 and sprinkled with a tiny bit of salt -- the second most favorite thing was a ripe peach picked from my great-uncle's orchard and consumed on the spot. This all took place on the south shore of lake erie, and the growing season was just long enough to get really good tomatoes, apples and peaches. At one time, northeast ohio had thousands of green-house fruitgrowers (when natural gas was a dime an mcf).

We used to get pretty good tomatoes from the Netherlands in NJ, but seems that Chile is squeezing them out of the market.
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Old 15th April 2012, 07:38 PM   #872
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Although we often think of fruit (yes tomato is a fruit, or I guess a berry in reality) from the fridge, there's something really special about warm from the tree or vine.
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Old 15th April 2012, 07:53 PM   #873
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackinnj View Post
When i was a kid the two most enjoyable things in life were -- a tomato grown by my mom or grandmom, picked from the vine, cut in 1/2 and sprinkled with a tiny bit of salt -- the second most favorite thing was a ripe peach picked from my great-uncle's orchard and consumed on the spot.
Amazing, I think of the same two things every year. My grandmother grew Italian plums because she came from Karnten Co. in Austria which had a lot of that influence (polenta was a staple). Your hands just reeked of the esters from the leaves and vines after you picked them. We ate them like apples. The peaches were wonderful until we had a deep freeze kill (this was Milwaukee after all).
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Old 15th April 2012, 08:03 PM   #874
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Mapo tofu? Usually, one uses Heinz Chili Sauce- are you sure Chen wasn't using that?
Mapo IIRC does not have a "red" sauce. I don't really see Heinz Chili Sauce as above reproach, so if that was it it does not matter. It's just one of my prejudices, when you are in a top dollar restaurant nothing "maufactured" is acceptible.
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Old 15th April 2012, 08:48 PM   #875
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It's not a red sauce, but it's an important component of the brown sauce- you add it after the garlic, ginger, and Szechuan preserved radish, and just before the (for you) pork or (for me) crumbled frozen tofu. Chen Kenichi uses it freely, so I'm happy to as well.
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Old 15th April 2012, 10:49 PM   #876
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Anyone dares to recommend a ketchup recipe? I don't dare to ask the spaniards I know make ketchup
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Old 15th April 2012, 11:29 PM   #877
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Mustards' Ketchup

3 1/2 lbs tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 to 1 1/4 lbs apples, peeled if using green, chopped
3 onions, chopped
1 1/2 c sugar
2 c cider vinegar
1 tbsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
6 black peppercorns
6 allspice berries
6 cloves

Combine all ingredients in a large stainless steel pot and bring to a
boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for about 2 hours, until
it is the consistency of commercial ketchup. Allow to cool slightly,
then puree in blender until very smooth. Return to heat for several
minutes to thicken further, stirring often. Strain and cool.
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Old 15th April 2012, 11:51 PM   #878
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Thank you very much! Does anyone else has his own recipe? It will be pretty fun to try and compare them
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Old 16th April 2012, 01:10 AM   #879
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SY's looks like a good starting point to which you can add or take away as you wish second time around. Pears can be substituted for apples if you like and you can add carrots to the mix if you want. The last 5 ingredients seem to be the most variable ones. I have not peeled my tomatoes before, I do my puree in a food processor then strain with a pestle (or WHY) through a flour sieve.

As always, YMMV. SY is one of the better cooks on this site.
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Old 16th April 2012, 05:06 AM   #880
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal Weldon View Post
Some areas of the country suffer from early and late blight and if you are not proactive, you can lose your whole crop just as they are beginning to ripen. Before I knew how to deal with it, I would sit in my garden and simply cry, then curse the gods, then swear I would never grow another tomato. If your friend has the same problem, tell him about either covering them with a poly roof and/or using copper spray. Life is good in tomato world again.
Since last year I have grown (on my apartment balcony) Mountain Magic, which are resistant to early and late blight. The only tomatoes I have ever grown successfully, even when I had a garden and a house. The variety Mountain Magic was developed at UNC, and are salad size tomatoes. No better tomato flavor in my opinion.

As to Canadian tomatoes, they are about the only ones I'll buy when mine are not in season. Keep on sending them down!

Read the recent book Tomatoland to learn about Florida tomatoes. I'm not much of an expert, but I am a biologist by training.
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