By now, most of the Whole Foods staff knows me by face, if not by name. And they must think I have the most miserable diet. Aside from a bit of fruit and a random vegetable or two, my shopping cart is mostly filled with meats and starches. Why buy vegetables when I have a garden brimming with kale, lettuce, leeks, Brussels sprouts and celery?
Yesterday, I made garden burgers. No, not vegetarian patties. But meat patties topped with condiments from the garden. I purchased the ground meat at Whole Foods, and topped it with scallions (instead of onions), arugula in place of lettuce, and ketchup I made last month from the bumper crop of tomatoes. Since I don’t grow potatoes for French fries or cabbage for cole slaw, I just sautéed some kale as a side to the burger.
Total Cost: Meat: $2.25, Bun: .25, Cheese Slice: $.25
4 cups diced tomatoes or 1 (28-to 32-ounces) can whole tomatoes in juice
1 tbs. plain oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 tsp. salt
Purée tomatoes with juice in a blender until smooth.
Heat a stainless steel sauce pot (do not use aluminum because of the high acidity), over medium heat. Add oil, onions and garlic. Stir occassionaly, and cook for about 10 minutes, or until soft and lightly gold. Add spices and cook for one minute just to help them release their fragrance. Add the remaining ingredients. Turn heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the ketchup is very thick. Let chill.
Purée ketchup in blender until smooth. Will keep for several months in the refrigerator.