Here we are in Brooklyn waiting for the storm to come (that would be Hurricane Irene). She has freaked this city out and we’ve battered down and stocked up in anticipation. I read advisories about having shelf-stable food on hand, and made sure we had plenty of bread, cheese, olives and wine. I also made a potato and egg tortilla this morning, because it’s good to be prepared.
I hope we’re over-prepared (in all seriousness we’ve got water and candles and have secured everything we can), but only time will tell how this storm plays out. One of my worst fears is what will happen to all the pork products and other food I have hoarded in my freezer if the power goes out, including the 5 quarts of tomato sauce we just made last week.
When Brad and I left Bradley Farm the other Sunday night after the Farm to Table dinner, Ray was all too happy to help carry 30 plus pounds of tomatoes to our car. Ray Bradley is know for his amazing heirloom tomatoes and I made a point of using some of them in their purest form. I made some tomato juice, an angel hair pasta with a fresh tomato “sauce” (kind of like this one), and of course we ate plenty of them simply sliced with a bit of salt. But even after that we still had well over 20 pounds of tomatoes on our hands.
Now I would like to take a moment and mention two things. 1. I love to make sauces and soups in the summer to enjoy during the winter, but it is a time-consuming process and I came into these tomatoes during what turned out to be one of the busiest work weeks of what has been a very busy summer. 2. From the second we drove away with those tomatoes Brad started saying, “we should make a ton of sauce!” and “we should can!”, and this we, really means me.
By the third night of coming down from the studio at 8 or 9pm, feeling hungry and tired from a long day of work, those crates of tomatoes in my living room were starting to feel like a ticking time bomb. I decided to call in the proverbial we, and thankfully Brad had no idea what he was getting himself into when I asked him to blanch and peel all of those tomatoes while I cooked dinner.
I finished the job and now we have the beginnings of our annual stockpile of sauce. But if the power goes out tomorrow, I might just be throwing a hurricane pasta party, with a lot of peas and pork chops.