Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tomatoes - From Start to Finish

I suppose that, since I don't own a vineyard or winery - or even make wine - it's possible that, come the end of summer, I compensate by canning a "vintage" of tomato sauces.

It's generally a full day's worth of peeling, chopping, crushing, saucing and canning; however, this year, the schedule was thrown a bit out of whack when Boo got called into work. My "Tomato Day" morphed into the "Lost (Tomato) Weekend." Starting off with 50 some odd pounds of Similkameen Valley tomatoes, the last lid didn't pop (for Boo) until well after I'd gone to bed on Sunday evening.

We did end up with a good six litres of tomato-vegetable soup - featuring potatoes from our garden - and a couple dozen jars containing two different tomato sauces: one, a garden herb and, the other, a red wine-infused version.

Not all of the wine went into the sauce however. I'm a true believer in the adage, "I always cook with wine and sometimes I even put some of it the food I'm cooking." And if that outlook on the kitchen isn't enough for you, the seemingly endless peeling and chopping was certainly enough to drive this boy to drink.

1398.  2009 Red Rooster Cabernet Merlot (VQA Okanagan Valley)

Normally, I'd keep this baby as close to my glass as possible, but I'd picked up some of the Cab Merlot on both of my last two visits to Red Rooster and the Naramata Bench. Since we had a decent stock in store, I figured I could spare some for the sauce.

And, naturally, still have enough to help me cope with the tasks at hand.

The '09 Cabernet Merlot is a blend of 58% Cab Franc, 37% Merlot and 5% Cab Sauv, with the grapes being sourced from both the South Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys. Full of flavour - dark fruit and sweet spice - I figured it was a worthy match for the sauce. Both as an addition and an accompaniment for the cook.

Since Boo missed the better part of the weekend's activities, he missed out on the wine as well. I guess it's a good thing that he can still get a taste of it when we make use of the first jar of sauce.

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