Sunday, September 9, 2012

Canning spaghetti sauce made from fresh tomatoes

Nine large mason canning jars of spaghetti sauce made from 12 lbs of tomatoes.

This year I have committed to making sure my family eats healthier. It is my responsibility as a parent to teach my kids to take care of themselves and eat the right kinds of foods that fuel their bodies for proper growth. That means lots of vegetables are being consumed here.

So many parents today are way too busy and don't think twice about nutrition. They just figure "I will feed my kids whatever they will eat" so they can get to the next soccer game, dance practice, or event. Enter McDonald's drive thru, eat junk, done! I am not saying I don't eat fast food once in awhile but let's face it, it should be named "Fat Food.". That is all your body gets out of it, right? There is almost no nutritional value in eating a box of French Fries but we have learned to crave the taste.

Should we as parents encourage that behavior in our already overweight society? No, of course not, most would answer. Why is it then that every two year old out there knows what McDonalds is? Yep, it means food(junk) and of course a toy. Don't get me wrong I am not perfect by any means and sometimes feed my kids "McJunk." I do really try to discourage going there too often which is what brings me to today's blog post and why I planted a large garden this summer.

If you have all these excess vegetables like we had this summer, well you just have to eat them. My girls love picking out vegetables from our garden and selecting which ones we want to make for dinner.

So this weekend one of  my best buddies, Dana and I made marinara spaghetti sauce from pure vegetables right from our gardens and maybe a couple added veggies from the local farmer's market.

It was a long labor intensive day even with all of our modern tools like a food processor, but I believe the nutrients we receive from our vegetable tomato sauce will far outweigh anything you can order from a drive-thru.

We spent our whole day making spaghetti sauce from fresh tomatoes, fresh spinach, fresh onions, garlic, fresh grown basil, fresh parsley, and all the yummy spices we Italians use to season our sauce. I hope my grandma is proud of me and what I made today. I am also thankful to my friend for teaching me a new skill of canning which may come in useful if I have another fruitful year in gardening. Yummy! "Mangia! Mangia bene!" my grandmother Consolino would say. (Roughly translated it means, "Enjoy your meal!")

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