Cubby and I went out to the garden yesterday to harvest tomatoes and found quite a few ready to pick. Also quite a few that were cracked, thanks to the heavy rain the day before. Which meant they needed to be used right away.
Cubby had been browsing among the basil as I was picking tomatoes, so he got a bunch of basil for me, I grabbed a couple of onions on the way out of the garden, and we brought it all to the house.
But when I asked Cubby if he wanted to go inside to help me make spaghetti sauce, he said no and ran to play on the lawn tractor. Right. Rather than fight that particular battle, I brought the kitchen outside. In a limited way, that is.
The baby did not go into the pot.
As soon as Cubby saw the knife, he zoomed over to assist me. I elected to not give him the chopping duties, however, instead putting him to work pulling basil leaves off the branches. Because I'm responsible like that.
Basically, I chopped all that up, plus some garlic, simmered it on the stove for an hour or so, then put it through the Foley food mill. Cubby very much enjoyed the food mill, though he found it a bit tricky to operate.
The resulting substance was very liquid, and I decided to just use it as tomato juice, which is excellent for braising big chunks of beef. Mostly because I did not have the time or the patience to spend two more hours reducing it to a saucy consistency. I want to can it, but if I can't find the time in the next couple of days (very likely), I'll just freeze it.
It's a far cry from 39 quarts of canned tomatoes, but at least it's something.