Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tomato-Peach Preserves—atop chicken, waffles, fondue, you name it

I had committed the ultimate foods-blogger goof: I had forgotten to photograph my food item before it was consumed. I had made jars of Tomato-Peach Preserves as gifts for some folks on our recent Colorado trip but hadn’t snapped the “blog shot” before I handed the jars off to recipients. How could I expect to display the ultimate yumminess of this great recipe?

Then I remembered a cute little presentation of chicken and mini-waffles that I had seen in a magazine. When we visit our son in Phoenix, he takes us to a memorable soul-food eating establishment that specializes in chicken and waffles. I had wanted to try to replicate that dish.

Wouldn’t some of my Tomato-Peach Preserves be just dandy topping the mini-waffle bites? In the fridge I had just a few remaining tablespoons of the preserves I had kept for our own enjoyment. I didn’t have a whole jar to photograph, but I could use a few scoops atop the waffles and throw myself a save.

So, long-story short, this blog isn’t about chicken and waffles (although Southern Living’s April 2012 issue tells you how to make the ones pictured above). This blog is about the Tomato-Peach Preserves that adorn the waffle morsels. I can’t tell you what a great (though unlikely) combination the tomatoes and peaches make for preserves. Since this is a refrigerated preserve recipe, the mixture doesn’t require the usual boiling-water bath and needs only to be scooped into sterilized jars, so preparation’s a breeze. (The mixture stores up to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.) It also cooks in minutes in the microwave.

Tomatoes, peaches, and the rosemary that spiced it up—all were from our garden. (On our recent trip, one family member even tasted it alongside some cheese fondue and pronounced it a great pairing.)
Easy preserves, indeed.

Tomato-Peach Preserves

2 1/4 cups peeled and diced peaches
2 1/4 cups seeded and diced plum tomatoes
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 (1.75-ounce) package powdered fruit pectin
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

In a 4-quart microwave-safe glass bowl stir together peaches tomatoes, sugar, lemon juice, and fruit pectin. Microwave at high for 8 minutes (mixture will boil). Stir mixture and microwave at high 12 to 16 minutes or until mixture is thickened. (Mixture should be the thickness of pancake syrup. After it cools and chills, it will thicken to soft-set preserves.) Stir rosemary and pepper into warm preserves. Cool mixture completely (about 2 hours). Serve immediately or cover and chill preserves in an airtight container until ready to serve. Store in refrigerator. Makes about 3 cups. (Source: Southern Living August 2011)

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