We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Bowl

Excuse me the title, but when Acadia showcased her Queen Monster Tomato my mind had yet to make the leap from Shark Week and bigger boats to farming and jumbo tomatoes.

And when I say we’re gonna need a bigger bowl…

I mean with all hands on deck and tomato juice flying and canning jars bubbling away and our floor running red with the carnage of so much flesh being torn limb from oops, sorry.  Darn shark week muddling my metaphors.

Argggh, who needs sharks?  I’ve got a couple of  scurvy lasses willing to flash their knives in the name of preserving food.

And while all hands were on deck for slicing dicing squeezing and chopping,

a funny thing happened to me.  In the midst of all this my pulse, racing with the pressure of back to school and outgrown sneakers and unfamiliar schedules and shark attacks, started to beat just a bit smoother.  And my brow, furrowed with the worries brought on by a new middle-schooler and a calendar to be updated with activities galore, relaxed back into my forehead.

So what does one do with an abundance of relaxed emotions and a couple of backyard apple trees that chose this year to produce hundreds of glamour-shot worthy beauties?

Easy.  One leaps deftly from canning tomatoes to grinding out applesauce.  And once again our workers sliced and diced and ground away

all in the name of putting up enough sustenance to keep us well throughout the harsh winter to come.  Oh the joy of walking past the crumbling destruction that is our flooded basement and into the storage closet that now houses this bounty —

(Note to the nay-sayers:  Yes, one can survive on tomatoes, applesauce and jam alone.  But just in case, say hello to our back-up plan:  Operation Vegetarian Katniss.


(Measurements don’t have to be exact. I go with whatever amount of apples we have picked, and adjust to taste after the mashing if necessary. Every year I search and search for my Foley food mill, then end up making it this way instead. Either way works well.)


  • 3 to 4 lbs of peeled, cored, and quartered apples.
  • 4 strips of lemon zest – Juice of one lemon
  • 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup or so of water — about 2-3 inches on the bottom of the pot, less makes thicker applesauce
  • To make this good applesauce OUTRAGEOUSLY good, add 1/2 cup of strawberry puree. Yum!


  • Put all ingredients into a large pot. Cover. Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  • Remove from heat. Remove cinnamon sticks. Mash with potato masher.
  • Ready to eat. My kids love it warm, but cold is great too. It’ll last up to one year in the freezer.