Learning to preserve the harvest from your summer garden can yield numerous benefits. This recipe can provide a delicious taste of summer all through the winter months. It’s also an excellent way to enrich your diet with nutrient dense, local foods!
We love eating our garden produce into the next year, as it always reminds us of the excitement of the summer gardening season. The recipe below is a fantastic way to preserve your tomato harvests, but there are many ways of preserving all types of garden crops, like pickling, fermenting, drying, freezing and more!
If you love this recipe and want to try more, keep an eye out for our fall fundraiser! We will have a set of 6 recipe cards as well as a handy dandy conversion chart available as part of the fundraiser. These cards have been decorated by our youth participants and the recipes have been created by Trellis staff. We love these recipes, and we would love to help you make the most of your garden produce. All proceeds from this donation will go directly to our efforts to make meaningful change in our food system, and to help our communities grow in new ways. Below you will find an example of the recipe cards.
NOTE: this recipe was carefully crafted by a skilled gardener and chef. It is one of the only tomato sauce recipes we have ever seen that has been approved for home canning, which is often discouraged due to risks associated with botulism. This recipe has been tested and approved, and we can vouch for its excellence. However, we would encourage you to follow the steps and the ratios detailed as closely as possible to ensure a quality product.
12 pounds tomatoes, a variety of paste, heirloom, etc.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 ½ cups diced onion
3 cloves garlic chopped
1 tablespoon canning salt
½ tablespoon dried oregano
½ tablespoon dried basil
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes-optional, but we love it
Citric acid or bottled lemon juice amounts per specific jar size below.
1. Heat oven to 425 degrees
2. Divide ingredients in half to work in two batches. Divide olive oil, balsamic, onions, garlic, and dry seasonings between 2 or 3 roasting pans (what you have that will fit in your oven).
3. Wash tomatoes, remove cores and blossom ends, cut in half and squeeze gently to remove some of the seeds.
4. Place tomatoes cut side down, on top of ingredients in prepared pans. Roast for about 40 minutes, turning once, until most of the tomato skins are puffed and browned. Remove from oven and pluck the skins off with tongs (It’s okay not to get ever little bit)
5. Scrape roasted tomatoes and roasting liquid into a large stock pot, set aside and repeat the prep and roasting with any remaining ingredients. When all tomatoes are roasted and in the stock pot, proceed to the next step.
6. Using an immersion or regular blender, blend roasted ingredients until smooth.
7. Bring sauce to a boil over medium-high heat; lower heat and simmer until it reaches desired consistency and flavor, 45 min-1hr.
8. Prepare a water-bath canner, jars and lids.
9. Adding ¼ teaspoon citric acid to pint jars, (½ teaspoon to quart jars) OR 1 tablespoon lemon juice to pint jars (2 tablespoons for quart jars)
10. Ladle the hot tomato sauce into warmed jars, one at a time with 1/2inch of head space in the jar. Wipe rims, attach lids, and place in a canner rack. Process in the water bath canner at 35 minutes for pint jars, and 40 minutes for quarts. (if processing both together, use the longer process time)
Note: Start the processing time after canner comes to a full boil and then adjust heat to keep a low boil for the timed amount. Turn off the burner, remove lid of canner and set timer for 5 minutes to let jars rest in the water bath. Transfer jars from a canner to a towel lined surface and let cool 24 hours. Check the seals, label and store cans for up to a year.
Looking ahead to the winter—how to preserve your summer goodness in the colder months.
The end of the summer season can be bittersweet as your start to say goodbye to your garden-fresh tomatoes and peppers as we look forward to cooler temps. Luckily there are many ways to preserve these summer veggies at peak freshness to enjoy throughout the winter months. Here are some of our go-to garden hacks for holding on to those summer flavors long after the summer months have faded away:
For those tomatoes that are so delicious right off the vine, preserving them by making and canning tomato sauce is a wonderful way to enjoy that summer taste through the winter months. Check out our post here for a recipe that we love!
Tomatoes can also be canned whole, or you can make incredible oven-dried tomatoes (very similar to sun-dried, but DIY and in your own kitchen!). Recipes are abundant online.
Did you know you can use the leftover ends of veggies such as carrots, celery and onions (even the skins!) to make a delicious vegetable broth? It’s true! Rather than tossing those valuable bits, store them together in a Ziploc bag in the freezer until you have enough to make a delicious veggie broth that can be used in all sorts of soup and stew recipes.
Pickling is another fantastic way to preserve those veggies that we all love. Think outside of the cucumber box—pickled red onions, cauliflower, jalapenos, carrots, and radishes are all delicious options to spice up your meals.
Plant now for cool season harvests!
Through the end of September is a great time to plant some additional fall crops as your summer harvests fade. You can direct sow many plants around this time, including radishes, beets, arugula, mustard, and many more greens. These plants will have just enough time to get established in the mild weather of the fall, preparing to live into the colder months. With the proper planning and maintenance, you can enjoy nourishing garden harvests all the way through the winter.
When direct sowing in late summer, be sure to carefully prepare your seed bed. This means removing any weeds, plant debris or other materials, and carefully cultivating the top couple inches of the soil. A loose, fluffy soil will help your seeds properly germinate. It’s especially important to keep the soil moist until your seeds begin to germinate. In some weather, this can mean lightly watering every day (preferably in the morning). As the weather gets cooler and generally wetter during the fall, the plants will require less watering when they become well established.
Fall greens can be great when you plant a salad mix, combining multiple types of seed together. Mixing spicy greens like mustard and arugula, with a sweet combo of kale, bekana, mizuna can make a delicious and easy salad mix. Spinach can be planted now and over wintered completely, giving you an early spring bounty! Radishes are also wonderful to grow because they can be fully mature in 30 days, and with colder, wet weather they are sweet, crunchy and delectable.
Covering your young seedlings with row cover can do them a great service in keeping your plants protected until they’re grown up. Using row cover can actually keep moisture in your beds as well, leading to faster germination. When the weather really gets cold in October and beyond, row cover over your plants will provide them with added warmth, extending your growing season even further!
September is a great time of year to increase your perennial plant stock. If you have perennials that you’ve been caring for this season, or much longer this is a great time of year to divide them. Dividing them will allow you an affordable way to fill more space, but it can also encourage the health of your plants by stimulating new growth, and also to control the size and shape of the existing plant.
Perennial plants that bloom in spring and summer like grasses, Beebalm, Black Eyed Susan’s and Echinacea, and hundreds of other garden staples can be carefully reproduced in great numbers. If your desired perennial is a fall blooming plant like a mum, or an aster, you should divide them in spring.
Carefully dig around several inches from the base of your perennial, and then using a sharp spade or potentially a knife, you can slice the root crown into multiple pieces. Do your best to leave the roots intact. Be sure you only take so much that you don’t diminish the plant size in its original space. It’s always best to have a place to replant them quickly when you divide your plant pieces, but you can also pass some out to friends and neighbors to spread the love.
The Trellis for Tomorrow team is super excited and appreciative that we have been selected as a finalist for your charitable giving contest! Since many of you may not know us, we have come up with the following list of the ten most important reasons why you should vote for us. We are also happy to talk with you and answer any questions about our work and impact. Please feel free to call Jennifer Anderson, our Executive Director, on her direct line at 610-886-4901.
Top 10 Reasons to Vote for Trellis for Tomorrow 1. In 2018, we positively impacted the lives of 1,500 people through our programs 2. Last year we provided 27,000 pounds of nutrient dense, organic produce to underserved individuals and families 3. 170 youth gained business skills at our 2018 Tempus entrepreneurship conference 4. We are building sustainable systems so local communities can grow and consume their own healthy food 5. Our Food for All program provides hundreds of corporate employees with opportunities to garden and give back 6. Youth in our programs have demonstrated uniquely high gains in social and emotional learning compared to other programs 7. Last summer the youth from our Youth Seed Enterprise program hand delivered produce they grew weekly to residents 8. In January, we hired our first non-founder ED who has over 25 years of experience in non profit and for profit management 9. We are 15 years young and poised to create even more sustainable change and positive impact in the next 15! 10. We are cultivating skills, confidence, and connectedness in young citizens so they have a future you can bank on!
At Trellis for Tomorrow we are crazy about this world. Bonkers. Nuts. And not just about this planet, but everybody who lives on it, too. We want to see it last, and even get better, which is why we are working hard to get people to think about—or rethink— their relationship with the environment and with each other, and to shift the focus toward fresh, innovative and creative solutions for our most pressing challenges.
We are working to flip the script on the unsustainable practices and systems in our society which are contributing toward a damaged environment and limited possibilities for growth, to breathe fresh life into the conversation about our future, and we need your help!
Trellis for Tomorrow is now accepting applications for our 2019 summer internship program. Space is limited and reserved for daring, enthusiastic, creative, forward-thinking, bold, hopeful, passionate community-minded individuals who aren’t afraid to go the extra mile, get their hands dirty and/or lead by example. It also helps if you believe: a) this world is worth saving, b) it can be saved and c) you might have unrealized superpowers to help save it (just kidding….or are we?).
This internship will provide selected applicants with valuable exposure to many of our programs, and meaningful opportunities for hands-on work in support of Food for All (FFA), an innovative community program to address food insecurity in our region. Join in the decision-making process and implementation of new solutions for a more localized food system for the 21st century! Inspire and mentor the next generation of leaders, policy-makers, home-gardeners, farmers and educated consumers of nutrient-dense foods! Apply today!
Specific projects and responsibilities will be dictated by the skills and interests of the candidates accepted into the program, but some of the opportunities could include the following:
• Developing promotional materials to cultivate and support program partnerships
• Assisting in the curation of online content to promote the FFA program and activities
• Attending high-level meetings with program partners
• Working together with FFA program director in garden builds, plantings and site visits to provide guidance for continued success within the program
• Delivering curriculum to young program participants on a working organic farm
• Preparing and distributing program surveys and evaluations to measure program impact
• Assist with the scheduling and installation of new raised beds on location
• Providing guidance to any volunteers or other participants supporting the program
In addition to the above listed responsibilities, each FFA intern will be assigned a special project to develop and manage to completion over the course of their internship.
Why apply for an internship with Trellis?
We strive to provide a diversified, engaging and rewarding summer experience for our interns. 2019 summer interns will:
• Experience hands-on work in program delivery and partner-client development,
• Receive valuable education and growth opportunities in community engagement, leadership development,
• Learn best practices in high-yield organic gardening and farming,
• Gain experience in youth mentorship, entrepreneurship, sustainability and corporate social responsibility.
There will be ample opportunity to collaborate and share information, tactics, etc. with other interns and members of the Trellis team throughout the internship
Applicants will be expected to be able to work independently based on direction and weekly feedback sessions. A good work ethic, excellent communication and organizational skills, and attention to detail, are required. Priority will be given to rising juniors and above. Majors or minors in Public Health, Environmental Studies, Nutrition, Sustainability Studies or some experience with farming, gardening, or food systems is a plus. We also have a unique internship opportunity for applicants with a major/minor in Communications/Marketing.
Location and Hours
The Trellis FFA internship program runs from May through August, and interns are expected to commit to a regular weekly schedule. Most internships are unpaid, but a local transportation stipend will be provided. Part-time internships require a minimum commitment of 20 workdays over the course of the program. Please do not apply for short-term internship of only a few weeks. The Trellis for Tomorrow office is currently based in Exton, PA, but will potentially be moving to Phoenixville prior to or during the summer. Some work will be office-based, but a majority will be in the field. Interns should provide their own transportation and will be reimbursed for mileage.
The Trellis for Tomorrow internships are designed for adolescents and young adults age 15-24 who are looking for an opportunity to obtain career building experience. Programs typically run six to eight weeks, including pre-internship training. Start date is March 1.
IMPORTANT NOTE: There may be some flexibility in dates, times, and locations of these programs based on participant needs. If you are interested, please contact us even if you think the days or times listed may not work for you.