{dairy free} Nutritious Baked Oatmeal

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One of my absolute favorite, go-to recipes for my family’s breakfast is baked oatmeal.  The first recipe I received was from a very dear friend, at an informational class I attended.  I have since modified it just a tiny bit for my family, because we have two children with dairy allergies, we make a dairy free version.

So, I will include those options for my readers that are dairy free as well.

My children ask for this recipe several times a week; they devour it!  We like to enjoy it with eggs, or another protein and some fruit.

*healthful tip: I like to cut down the syrup  by a 1/4c , and no one even misses it!

{dairy free} Nutritious Baked Oatmeal

Rating: 51

Number of servings: 6

See Detailed Nutrition Info on

{dairy free} Nutritious Baked Oatmeal

Ingredients

  • 3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup Grade B Maple Syrup, coconut sugar, or sucanat
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (expeller pressed has no flavor, regular does-either is good in the recipe) or butter
  • 1TB baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 tsp real salt (salt should never be solid white-Himalayan pink spat is delicious and has trace minerals)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2c applesauce
  • *your favorite ad-ins. We've done: pecans, diced apple, frozen blueberries, extra applesauce, pears, and dried coconut

Instructions

  1. Combine oats and water.
  2. Add in remaining ingredients
  3. Pour into greased 8x8 baking dish.
  4. Bake 25 minutes at 350, or until lightly brown and firm.
  5. **if you double the recipe like I often do, pour into a 9x13 baking dish

Notes

**If you would like to soak your oats (which breaks down any anti-nutrients found in grains): *Combine your rolled oats with 1 cup of cultured dairy, such as whey, buttermilk, or yogurt) *Soak overnight. *Omit adding water, continue with the rest of steps.

Where to get Ingredients

If you don’t have these ingredients in your cabinet yet, you should get them if you can.  They are great to keep on hand, and we use them a lot in place of other unhealthier options (margarines, pre packaged oatmeal, sugary breakfast foods)

***You can find a Pure, Grade B Maple Syrup by clicking that link.  The ingredients in that bottle?  Maple Syrup.  =) Log Cabin and similar brands and high fructose corn syrup, which our bodies do not respond to in the same way they do REAL foods like minimally processed Maple Syrup.

***I buy organic rolled oats in bulk from Azurestandard.com

***We use and love Tropical Traditions coconut oils

I also buy my coconut sugar, cinnamon, and aluminum free baking powder from Azure 

I get my Pure Himalayan Salt from Amazon

My eggs come from my backyard, but try to shop from local farmers if you can 🙂

 

Nutritious, Traditional Food How To: {Weston A. Price} Homemade Baby Formula Part 2

Originally posted October 2013
A few months back I left you with some information about the homemade, meat based baby formula we make at our home.
(Well, were making. Mister is almost 14 months old now, and we have weaned onto a coconut milk tonic. But I have read where many families used the homemade broth up to 2 years).

So, what is this homemade, meat-based baby formula recipe, you may be asking?

From Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats by Sally Fallon, page 603 here it is:

***Please see my previous post HERE for LOTS of details on this recipe, and where to find the ingredients.***


Here is my method for making this formula.

  • I first made my bone broth, either chicken in the crock pot, or beef bone broth in a huge stock pot.
  • Then collect all my ingredients and get out my measuring spoons for each.

 

  • Start the broth on a simmer for cooking the liver. Here is my simmering broth:
  • I slice the beef liver into strips and then cut it into about 1″ pieces so it cooks quickly.
  • Next, I add the organic, grassfed beef liver to the broth. I Simmer for a few minutes, or until it is no longer pink.
I know, it’s raw liver. That is pure, nutritious gold right there, y’all!
  • After it is cooked, I spoon out the liver and placed into the food processor. Then pour some of the liquid into the food processor with the liver. Puree it until it is liquefied (this will take some time- you’re liquefying a meat, so be patient! You need as much of the meat as you can get in the formula). *Be careful to let it cool some or you will have exploding beef liver juice flying all over your kitchen. Ask me how I know … Depending on how old your food processor is, you may need to upgrade to the Best Food Processor to ensure that you end up with a smooth paste. Outdated processors are great for chunky recipes and breadcrumbs, but with this recipe, you need a processor that will give you an even consistency.
  • Strain the liquefied liver through a mesh strainer into a bowl with the rest of the broth. **Liver has an entire strip of some kind gristle running through it. You need to strain this out, which is why I run mine through a strainer. The gristle DOES NOT liquefy. I have read other tutorials that fail to mention that … and then I wondered why it wouldn’t go through the nipple of Mister’s bottle. You must strain out the gristle. Okay. Got it? Strain the gristle….
My liver infused broth in a bowl, with some of my ingredients
  • Then I add in the amount of each ingredient the recipe calls for, and whisk it very well. I add the powdered ingredients first, so they can dissolve while it is warm. Then pour it into jars, using a wide mouth funnel for ease of filling the jars.
**Tips**
  • One batch makes about 36 ounces, which at 8 months was enough for one day for my son. I made this in triple and quadruple batches, so I didn’t have to make it every day. My understanding is it will last 5 days in the fridge just fine. Ours certainly did. Do what you think is best.
  • Shake it well before pouring each time. The fats (olive oil, coconut oil, and cod liver oil) in the formula will separate when chilled in the fridge, so shake, shake, shake. But be sure the lid is on nice and tight, or you will have a huge mess of beef liver baby formula all over your kitchen. Ask me how I know..

There you have it, how we make the homemade baby formula from Weston A Price and Nourishing Traditions.

This post may contain affiliate links.

Homemade Cream Cheese and Whey (using kefir or yogurt)

I wrote this post before we knew our oldest had a dairy allergy- She is now 7 and still reacts to dairy. However, I absolutely *loved* making unique foods from our raw milk in the past. Maybe one day we can do it again, or try it with goat milk. =)
(2019 update- we now have our own goats and use raw goat milk without any protein problems like we have with cow dairy)
Homemade cream cheese and whey from raw milk yogurt
enjoying homemade-cream cheese filled strawberries
Would you like to make your own cream cheese and have homemade, raw whey to ferment foods with? (and sip on when you’re feeling run down? You can do that! All you need is:

 

 

You know … “curds and whey?” from the favorite childhood nursery rhyme? Yep- that is farmer’s cream cheese and whey!

For kefir cream cheese and whey you will need:

  • a jar of your kefir
  • a glass bowl
  • a white tea towel or a few layers of cheese cloth material
  • some way to hang your kefir above the bowl (I use a wooden spoon hanging from the cabinet by a rubber band)

1) lay your towel over your bowl
2) pour your kefir into the towel
3) pull the edges of the towel up until they are in a nice bunch at the top
4) use a big ole rubber band to tie the towel up to a wooden spoon that is hanging from your cabinet.
5) let the whey drip down into the bowl for 7+ hours. I let it go over night, or all day depending on what time I started…

After just a few minutes. see what I mean by hanging it up?

When you are done, you will have a tangy cream cheese in your cloth (that you can use for all sorts of recipes), and whey left in your bowl! Both will last weeks (6 or more for sure for the whey… the cream cheese doesn’t make it that long around our house!) in the fridge.

***Be sure when working with kefir grains that you don’t use metal. Metals can harm your grains, so you want a cheapo plastic mesh strainer, and preferably glass jars and bowls***

The cream cheese, or “farmer’s cheese” as a friend calls it, is really good if you add in a little powdered (ground up) sucanat, or sliced strawberries. You can use it for anything you use regular cream cheese for, and it is a probiotic! So good and nutritious for your gut.

You can also do the same thing with regular, plain, full fat store bought yogurt (look for Brown Cow and Stonyfield Farms brands- I have tried both and they were great). You could be experimental and try the Euro Cuisine YM80 Yogurt Maker. This way, you’ll know everything is fresh and made from scratch.

However, if you don’t want to make the kefir just yet, but want to try recipes that call for whey (and make homemade cream cheese) then I TOTALLY encourage you to use the store bought yogurt. It does need to be plain, full fat yogurt- no added sugars, sweeteners, or fruits- preferably organic and not ultra pasteurized.

You can use your whey to ferment foods, soak grains, and in place of milk in some recipes (like my favorite tortilla recipe by the Prairie Homestead).

A jar of whey

So, that’s how you make kefir cream cheese and whey!

What do you think? Easy enough?

If you have questions, please ask. If I don’t know the answer, I will direct you to someone that can help.

Traditional Food How To: Bone Broth {in the slow cooker}

I get lots of questions about how I make my bone broth.

I started out using a recipe from a book, but have adapted my own way of doing it since then.

Bone broth is FULL of nutrients that help heal the body and gut, & improve digestion.  Do a quick Google search for the benefits of bone broth, and you will see what I mean-gelatin, proteins, and nutrients dense, it is a favorite in our home.

Our family used it as the base of a homemade baby formula {and part 2 here} for our son with a dairy allergy, and a very messed up gut.  Every bit of me (and my husband) believes that bone broth helped heal our infant son’s gut, get him off medications, and get him healthy again, as an alternative to commercial formulas.  {I am not a doctor and what I write here is strictly my opinion, not medical fact}

We now give bone broth with a pinch of real salt during illnesses, cold season, and share with the dogs, chickens, and cats.

So if you want to replace the store bought “broths” and sodium in a square bullion cubes for a real, nutrient dense food, that is easy to make, keep reading!

  1. First, you have to get the bones by preparing a chicken, preferably from an organic grassfed chicken.  So, I make (an amazing) whole chicken in the crock pot or using my 9 Qt Le Crueset in the oven.
  2. Just cut up some carrots and onion, maybe some garlic, and any other veggies you like.
  3. I rub my chicken down with organic olive oil, Himalayan pink salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic.  But season yours however you like.
  4. Put your chicken in the crock pot (I start mine frozen so I cook it all day on low, but if yours is thawed 4-6 hours on low will probably cook it through nicely) BREAST SIDE DOWN, so it doesn’t dry out.
  5. Place your carrots and other vegetables in around the chicken.
  6. Add about 2 cups of water, and let it cook on low for 4-6 hours, or longer if frozen.
  7. About an hour before it is done, I flip it breast side up and season the breast really well.
  8. Pull the meat off the chicken bones and serve as you choose. (by itself, in soup, on pizza, in chicken salad, on a sandwich … the possibilities are endless.  And you can really make that meat stretch for some frugal meals!)

That is how you acquire your bones (and flavorful chicken for the week)!

{The great thing is, you can cook a chicken every week (say on Saturday, or Sunday), have chicken for recipes during the week (or freezer meals!), and make a new batch of bone broth every week for the freezer!}

Here is how you make (chicken) bone broth

You will need:

  • crockpot
  • water
  • aple cider vinegar
  • a fine mesh strainer (metal is better than plastic here, it is finer)
  • jars/plastic bags
  • funnel (not necessary but definitely helps the pouring process)

Your chicken has cooked and your house now smells good enough to attract passersby.  You have removed all the meat from your chicken, and are left with the bones, skin, etc.

  1. Place the bones back in the crock pot.
  2. Add a 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar.  This will draw the minerals out of the bones.
  3. Cover the bones with water, leaving 1 inch at the top.
  4. Turn the crockpot on low, and let simmer all night.  If you are feeling really froggy, in the morning add more water and let it go another 18- 24 hours.  I usually let mine go about 2 days in the crockpot.  This will cook those bones good!
  5. When the bones are done, use a big spoon to pull out the bigger, obvious bones.  Compost/trash them, or smash and feed to dogs/animals on the farm.
  6. Pour the broth through a fine mesh strainer into a big bowl
  7. Pour your strained broth into plastic bags or glass jars for freezing.
Before the broth is strained
remove the bones, fat, cartilage, etc from crock pot
**Tips**
  • Use a pastured chicken if you have a local source; we raise our own each year.
  • When putting your bones in the pot to cook, you can add in celery, carrots, onion … any vegetables you like (just like you did for the chicken meat).  They will only add flavor and nutrients!
  • When freezing in glass jars, be sure you are using wide mouth jars, and you stop at the fill line.  I never screw my lids on all the way until it is all the way frozen, because I lost an ENTIRE huge pot of {organic, grassfed} beef bone broth to my jars busting.  Talk about devastation.  So use the right jars and I’d suggest not sealing them air tight right away, because that liquid is going to expand up as it freezes and will need room to do so.
  • Make sure you freeze your broth in amounts you will use in a recipe.  Rarely will you use an entire gallon zip lock full of bone broth, unless you’re making a soup.  I freeze mine in pint and pint-and-a-half jars.  The pint-and-a-half jars are the COOLEST jars ever. and so versatile.
  • I also add chicken feet from our pastured chickens. Chicken feet are full of gelatin, which is a nutrient dense food when found naturally from organic sources.  This will absolutely improve any broth and make it gel so well! Bone broth done correctly should gel.
  • I suggest reading about the benefits of chicken feet in broth, because they far outweigh the weirdness of seeing chicken feet in your crockpot.  =)
I use my bone broth in any recipe that calls for broth, and add it when cooking brown rice and black beans.  Talk about FLAVOR (and nutrients!).
You can make delicious, from scratch soups like this.
Your family will thank you.
And drink every last drop from their bowls.
So there you have it- bone broth in the crockpot.  When you or someone in the family is feeling sick this winter, thaw a jar and have them drink it, or make them a soup with it.
It is truly a real, healing food.
Next time I will post how I make my bone broth from organic, grassfed beef.
Have you ever tried making bone broth?  If you try this method, let me know how it goes in the comments!

Menu Monday: October 26, 2015

Menu Monday with www.QuietInTheChaos.com

 

Menu Monday Week of October 26th:

    • Sunday:  Roast, potatoes, salad, cow peas with bacon
    • Monday: Roast sandwiches, cow peas, homemade bread, roasted broccoli
    • Tuesday: fried chicken, roasted broccoli
    • Wednesday: breakfast- eggs, toast, baked oatmeal
    • Thursday: burgers, baked potato chips, salad
    • Friday: leftovers
    • Saturday: ribs, baked beans, salad

Breakfasts will be fried egg sandwiches and oatmeal/quinoa for the Mister, fried eggs and oatmeal/quinoa for Ila, and oatmeal or quinoa for Lexie (since she doesn’t like eggs).  Max and Ila both like a second course after their eggs.  =)

Just FYI: the salad we eat almost every night of the week is romaine lettuce with garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, with cherry tomatoes.  The kids devour it and it is a good way to get dark green.  Sometimes I add baby kale.

What’s for dinner at your house this week?

Menu Plan Monday

Weekly Wrap Up: November 2014 {and Notebooking American Girl Books}

This month has flown by!  Thanksgiving is already over and everyone is prepping for Christmas.

We haven’t had any real weekly updates the last few weeks, because well … we haven’t done a lot of formal schooling.  Most everything has been relaxed and theme based.  And of course, we spend a lot of time just snuggling Ila.  =)  I mean, I spend 6 hours a day nursing her, and after every feeding Lexie and Max both request a turn to hold her.  So, we school when we can. 😉

Fall Indoor activities {quietinthechaos.com}

Lexie and “Jane Kirsten” having a picnic, building forts, happy baby ila

We worked on some pumpkin activities, which involved Max making his own pumpkin description book. (you can find it at www.ThisReadingMama.com) He really enjoyed it!  We are still working on NOT eating the markers … =)

Handwriting Practice and Fine Motor {quietinthechaos.com}

practicing handwriting, coloring with markers, gluing pumpkins in book

We also had our first big snow: (Lexie doesn’t mind the cold if she can play in the snow.  Mister refuses to keep his clothes on, so of course he gets “too cold” and needs to come in.  haha)

DSCN2822

Lexie is still notebooking her way through the Kirsten of American Girl series.  She loves doing this and I am so glad she does.  I am going to introduce her to a timeline soon.  We have been talking about so many things in history lately, and I know it will help her understand something so contrast if she can see a visual.  We have two chapters left to notebook, and then we will move on to the next book.  I got our blank notebooking pages from notebookingfairy.com.  I chose the biography pages, whole punched them, and put in a folder with prongs.  We will add to it as we go.

notebooking American Girl Books

Notebooking “Meet Kirsten”

Last Saturday I was working on some knitting, and Lexie asked if I could show her how to knit.  Of course I said yes!  I love that my girl wants to sew and knit!  So, this is the little progress we made.  You may be wondering how I helped a four year old knit- I sat on the edge of my chair, and had her stand between my legs, so I could get my arms around hers.  I place my hands over hers, and we just went through the motions.  By the end, she knew exactly what to do, although she struggled with the dexterity needed.  I have no doubt she will be able to do it herself before long!

knitting with a four year old

We did do lots of reading about Thanksgiving.  You can see my post of supplemental books for Thanksgiving HERE (link coming soon).  Lexie really enjoyed this and learned lots of new vocabulary from these readings.  She has been using the new words every chance she gets!

And then, of course, we had Thanksgiving dinner.  Usually we spend Thanksgiving traveling to see family, but this year with Ila being so little we just decided to stay home.  It was my first year to cook a real Thanksgiving dinner for my family- we had turkey, dressing, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole (from scratch, might I add…) and pecan pie.  And of course I am using my turkey bones to make bone broth!  As my sweet Lexie said, it was a “real Thanksgiving feast!”  She was so funny, she was kinda wiggling around on her seat during dinner, and she says, “I am just wiggling my belly so I can make room for more!”  haha  She definitely belongs to us!

Thanksgiving "feast" www.quietinthechaos.com

Between all this I have slowly started back running on the treadmill, and decorating for Christmas.  I hope to get you a recipe for that DELICIOUS green bean casserole soon, and an update on our Advent activities.  =)

Happy Holidays, and stay warm!

Favorite Dairy Alternative: Coconut Products {week 1}

I am joining a “52 weeks of favorites” Link up hosted by a fellow blogger.  I am beginning a few weeks, late so I will have more like 49 weeks.  =)

I will begin with something my family could not live without- dairy alternatives.

My first pick for a dairy alternative, is coconut oil and milk.  Coconut is a powerhouse of essential fats and nutrients.

coconut as dairy alternative

Although coconut milk has a coconut flavor, the flavor doesn’t show much in things like muffins and other baked goods.  I don’t think I would bake a chocolate cake with it …. but then again, that might be really good!

Coconut oil is a must have in our home, because the kids can’t have butter.  I use Tropical Traditions coconut oil for all my cooking needs, instead of unhealthy vegetable oils.  I trust Tropical Traditions, their standards are above all others,  and they offer amazing sales.

I looove sales, and nutritious food!  *Win*

For coconut milk, we buy Native Forest Organic Classic Coconut Milk from Amazon.  Using Amazon Prime, we get free 2-day shipping, and a great value on real, organic coconut milk.  This is what I use to make Mister’s coconut milk tonic.  You can read more about it by clicking on that link.

My husband and I eat butter and use milk for our toast and coffee.  But when it comes to baking and cooking for the entire family, I use these non dairy alternatives because I know they are healthy for my family, and are a great value!

You can replace any oil or butter in any recipe with expeller pressed coconut oil, with no coconut flavor.  Expeller pressed coconut oil from Tropical Traditions is gently refined, so there is no coconut-y flavor to your food.  Although, I have used regular virgin coconut oil, (which does have coconut flavor), and we didn’t notice any coconut coconut in our food.  So, I really just use what I have on hand now.

We add it to smoothies, sautee our veggies in it, and use it on diaper rashes and cuts.  Really, there are endless ways to use coconut oil!

Easy, {real food} Homemade Chicken Fried Rice

Healthy, Homemade Chicken Fried Rice

I had a reader asking about a chicken fried rice recipe.  This one is super easy, and just as good as any takeout you can find!  And there is no msg (depending on your soy sauce), and all healthy ingredients

What you need:

  • 2-4 chicken breasts, diced
  • 2-3 cups of brown rice
  • healthy oil of your choice-olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 red or white onion (we like red)
  • 2-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 carrots chopped, or a handful of baby carrots
  • frozen sweet peas if you like peas in your fried rice
  • MSG free soy sauce

What to do:

  • I cook my (long grain, organic) brown rice in the morning, then refrigerate it so it loses some moisture- I get my rice from Azure because it is organic and a lower price in bulk, but you can get it at most stores in smaller amounts.  *rice is one food I really encourage you buy organic*
  • Around dinner time, in a skillet of butter/Olive oil/coconut oil, I add a chopped onion, a few cloves of minced garlic, and chopped carrots, and peas if you like them (we don’t).   As all that sautees I add in 2-3 eggs and scramble them up.  Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Then I add my cubed chicken (I use about 4 breasts but that makes enough for leftovers).  Add a little MSG free soy sauce 
  • After the chicken cooks through, I add the chicken mixture together with the rice in a pot large enough, and let the rice heat up over low/medium heat.
  • Spoon into bowls, and add more soy sauce to taste

I know, the carrots are missing. I didn’t have any, but I did have mushrooms.  So I deiced up the mushrooms to add texture and make it go farther.
 

 

You’re done!  It is very easy, and super healthy.  The whole grains, and MSG free soy sauce, along with the veggies makes for a healthy, real food meal the whole family will enjoy.  My 3 year old and 16 month old devour this recipe.
 
It also freezes well, so I make double batches and freeze half in a gallon freezer bag.
 
Now it’s your turn!
What is one of your favorite meals to enjoy with rice?  Do you have a chicken fried rice recipe to share?  Let us know in the comments!
 
 
 

This post may contain affiliate links. When you shop through those links, I get a small percentage back from the website.  Thank you for supporting this blog!  =)


Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil {Giveaway!}

I mention in many of my blog posts how much we love coconut oil.  However, not all coconut oil is created equal {by any means}.  Of course, using coconut oil is much better than refined oils; but we have found the highest quality of real-food coconut oil comes from Tropical Traditions.

They have a gold label coconut oil, which is the highest quality, and has a coconut flavor.  For cooking foods that I do NOT want coconut flavor, I use their expeller pressed coconut oil.  Expeller pressed oil will not have the coconut flavor.

My children take coconut oil by the spoon full.  We add it to smoothies, cook our eggs in it, and I replace it for butter in any recipe.  With Max’s dairy allergy, I know we can rely on coconut oil for his health and safety.  I trust Tropical Traditions, and the process by which they make coconut oil. {FYI: there is no such thing as “extra virgin” coconut oil.  When you see that on a jar of coconut oil, they are just trying to grab your attention, because everyone associates the best olive oil with “extra virgin” olive oil.}


We use so much Tropical Traditions coconut oil, I am saving to buy it in the gallon!  They run awesome sales  on all their products, which is when I jump on my purchase, so be sure to sign up for their sales alerts!


Win 1 quart of Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil!


Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil - 32 oz.
 
 
Tropical Traditions is America’s source for coconut oil. Their Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil is hand crafted in small batches by family producers, and it is the highest quality coconut oil they offer. You can read more about how virgin coconut oil is different from other coconut oils on their website: What is Virgin Coconut Oil?
 
 
 
Tropical Traditions also carries other varieties of affordable high quality coconut oil. Visit their website to check on current sales, to learn about the many uses of coconut oil, and to read about all the advantages of buying coconut oil online. Since the FDA does not want us to discuss the health benefits of coconut oil on a page where it is being sold or given away, here is the best website to read about the health benefits of coconut oil.
 

**The first mandatory entry for this giveaway is to subscribe to Tropical Traditions Sales Newsletter- trust me, even if you weren’t entering to win this giveaway, you would want to be subscribed to their newsletter!

It is full of wonderful information, and keeps you up to date on all their amazing sales (free shipping promotions, buy one get one free, etc).


Here is a video with many ways to use coconut oil.

 ***If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.  I did this on another blogger’s website, and received the book.  It is a nice, thick, very informative book about virgin coconut oil.  I have really enjoyed reading it.

 
Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.
*Winner of the giveaway has 24 hours, from the time I email them, to reply before I move along to another winner.
 

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Preserving {freezing} Tomatoes for the Winter


We had hundreds of tomatoes come off our plants this year.  So with the ones we didn’t eat right away, I did one of two things.  I either 1) fermented them for sauces and put them up in cold storage, or 2) I blanched and froze them.  

Here is how I blanched them.  It is SO easy.  Before I knew about fermenting, this is how JTom and I always put up our tomatoes.

You will need:

  • Clean tomatoes with a small X cut into the skin
  • a pot of boiling water
  • a large slotted spoon
  • a large bowl for an ice bath
  • a bowl for skins
  • a bowl for skinned tomatoes (or you can put directly into the freezer bags if you have some help)
  • freezer bags
 
Here are my clean tomatoes and my pot of boiling water:



Here’s what you do (I set up an assembly line):

1. Bring a pot of water to a boil
2. While it is coming up, cut small Xes in tomato skins (this allows the hot water to get under the skin and it will literally pop right off)


3. Place some of the tomatoes into the boiling water for 45 seconds.  This is called blanching.  If you are doing rather small tomatoes, I would only do 30 seconds.  45 seconds was perfect for me.

 
 
 
4. Remove tomatoes from boiling water and place directly into ice bath.  This stops the blanching process.


5.  Using your hands, peel the tomato skins off (they should just slide right off).
Discard the skins in a bowl (I was using a pot) and place the tomatoes in freezer bags.  I did about 5 bowls full, so instead of placing them directly into freezer bags, I just put them all in a bowl so I could go back to blanching.  Then I bagged them all up when I was completely done blanching.

Make sense?  =/

 
**Here is also where you can add seasonings- for chilli, spaghetti, salsa, etc., directly into the freezer bag.  Just be sure to label your bags!  You can also dice the tomatoes, cut in half, before freezing.  I just left mine whole, because I just use a spoon and cut them in half while I am cooking … and I didn’t want to make a bigger mess at the time.

6. Place bags in freezer!



How easy is that?  I did this while the kids ate breakfast and we talked about of character trait for this week (love) and recited memory work.  It took me all of 10 minutes?


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