I’m not sad to see the summer end, but I am a bit saddened by the realization that summer produce season is drawing to a close. Summer tomatoes and zucchini by the bushel are tapering off, to be replaced by my favorite squash and pumpkin varieties.
My Saturday started with my mother sending me the picture above. I shot her back an immediate text asking what they were eating. She said that she made a sauce with her tomatoes and Thai bird chilis. She had cooked the tomatoes and chili peppers together and made them into a quick, savory, and extremely hot sauce:
We were out of the house when I got that text and we spent all day running around, watching the Razorbacks become the first team since 1990 to lose in New Jersey, and enjoying a beautiful early fall evening at a Stock the Bar Shower.
This shower was hosted by my soon-to-be brother and sister-in-law. She has an outlandishly good eye for decorating. Her good friend Brittany Phillips (of Brittany Phillips Design) crafted the invitation:
And her girlfriend helped with the sangria (take in that gorgeous porch, the milk can stand, and the perfectly positioned rocking chair, please):
My future brother in law is a phenomenal cook. He’s going to grill at the wedding, but let it be known that his kitchen prowess extends far beyond the open flames. He made this pizza, some great ham and cheese sliders, a cheese ball, and all kinds of other goodies.
We stayed after the party to visit and were sent home with a load of leftovers, including a sack full of perfectly firm late summer tomatoes (plus about a hundred bottles of liquor). I woke up on Sunday and started making my own spicy tomato and chili sauce. My version doesn’t have fresh bird chilis, but I used sriracha instead. My fiance, who doesn’t care for tomatoes at all, has requested this sauce for two consecutive breakfasts and dinners.
The flavors are so strong in this concentrated sauce recipe that it really turns up any breakfast sandwich (or dinner sandwich, if you’re crazy like us and enjoy breakfast for dinner). You can freeze a batch of this sauce to have on hand for up to six months.
You will need:
- 4 cups fresh tomatoes
- 1/4 large white onion, chopped
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 2 tbsp. minced fresh garlic
- 2 tbsp. Thai chili sauce (I use Sriracha)
- 1 tsp. each salt and pepper
- 1/2 tsp. each corainder seeds and crushed red pepper
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 2 tbsp. white sugar
- In a medium sized saucepan on low-medium heat, gently stir together chopped tomatoes, olive oil, onion, and garlic for about five minutes.
- Stir in Sriracha, seasonings, vinegar and sugar and cook gently over low-medium for about ten minutes.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until the sauce reduces in half (this took over an hour in my kitchen).
- Puree in a food processor or blender until smooth, if desired. I kept mind “chunky” because I thought the texture would be better for the open-faced sandwiches I served.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve, then heat it up. This sauce is best served warm.
- I made quick open-faced egg sandwiches for brunch (these were again requested that evening for dinner) by heating a piece of whole-wheat toast in the oven with about 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and a few tablespoons of crumbled bacon.
- I fried an egg, topped with paprika, salt, pepper, and scattered parmesan.
- To assemble, put the bread on the plate first, spoon the warmed tomato sauce over the bacon and cheese layer, then top with an egg.