Green Tomato Relish

easy green tomato relish

At the end of the season, there always seem to be green tomatoes left clinging to the vine. Over the weekend I went to my mom’s house on the shore to help ‘batten down the hatches’ before the hurricane. During summer, she had the most bountiful tomato plants with the sweetest tomatoes. But with a massive storm surge on the way, it was time to salvage what we could, and say goodbye to the plants.  So I came home with a pile of green tomatoes.

I spent Sunday night cooking up a storm, in preparation for the hurricane. As it turned out, we were extremely lucky and never lost power, but I had baked bread, tossed pasta salad, and made meatloaf. And I began the great  green-tomato-relish-experiment.  Not only had I never made green tomato relish, I had never even tasted green tomato relish.

It turns out that green tomato relish is really easy to make, and also really tasty.  However, after an evening of experimentation I determined that the type of vinegar is really key here.  Although many recipes call for cider vinegar, I really liked my batch with white balsamic best.  Of course, white balsamic is quite sweet, so you don’t need as much sugar as you might see in other green tomato relish recipes.

This relish is tangy and sweet and wonderful on meatloaf.  It also happens to be great on grilled cheese.  And I spooned a bit over my scrambled eggs this morning, which was lovely. Of course, it would be great on a hamburger or hot dog too!

I hope you all made it through the storm safe and sound!

Easy Green Tomato Relish

1/4 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cups chopped green tomatoes

2 cups white balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup of water

3 tablespoons sugar

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a saucepan, saute the onion, pepper and garlic in oil over medium heat until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes.  Add the tomatoes, the vinegar, the water and the sugar. Simmer gently over medium heat until most of the liquid has evaporated – about 20 minutes (plus or minus depending on your tomatoes). Add the salt and pepper to taste.  Cool the relish and serve or store in the fridge for up to a week.

Published in: on October 30, 2012 at 6:44 pm  Comments (8)  
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Girl Food: Strawberry, Balsamic, Goat Cheese Bruschetta

strawberry balsamic jam bruschetta

I think Jeff secretly loves when I go out of town.  Oh, sure, he calls to tell me he misses me, and he says the house is too quiet.  But he gets to hog the tv remote, crank up the air conditioning, and order Domino’s pizza. What’s not to love about that?  When I’m not around, Jeff dives into the foods I eschew – greasy take-out, Doritos, candy bars.  And I bet he’s not alone among husbands in his wife-free habits. 

balsamic bruschettastrawberry balsamic goat cheese

Of course, I indulge myself when Jeff is away, too.  My indulgences are just a little different…  no football or Snickers for me.  No, I go all-out girl.  Facial masks and whiney chick music and pretty, luxurious food.  Tea sandwiches and macerated fruit salads, and gorgeous strawberry, balsamic, and goat cheese bruschetta.

fruit bruschettaI had made the strawberry balsamic jam a few weeks ago, when our CSA share was bursting with red berries.  I’ve been spreading it on everything from English muffins to ham sandwiches, but this is by far my favorite way to enjoy the jam. Tangy, creamy goat cheese and rich, sweet strawberry jam with fresh, aromatic basil.  Perfection. These little gems would be a great brunch hors d’oeuvre, or a perfect light lunch with a salad.  They’d make awesome picnic fare, or a book-club treat, or even a midnight snack.  Basically, they are just yummy.  Anytime.  Particularly when your goat-cheese hating husband is out of town.

Strawberry, Balsamic, Goat Cheese Bruschetta

makes about 2 dozen

2 cups hulled strawberries

1 cup sugar

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 small baguette

5 ounces soft goat cheese

pinch of salt

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

In a heavy bottomed saucepan, mash the berries slightly.  Add the sugar and vinegar and simmer on low heat about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick.  Cool to room temperature.

Cut the bread on a diagonal into 1/2 inch thick slices and toast the bread lightly in the toaster oven.  Spread the toasts with the goat cheese and sprinkle with salt.  Spoon the strawberry balsamic jam over the goat cheese and top with the basil.  Serve immediately.


Published in: on July 18, 2010 at 7:03 am  Comments (38)  
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