One habit I began a couple years ago was writing down any new recipe I make in a litle spiral-bound notebook. This has a number of functions. I have a long term goal of writing a cookbook, and having a record of things you've cooked (wether you loved or hated how it turned out) is a good place to staret, and can be a jumping-off point for tweaking recipes that didn't turn out how you hoped. It helps me to have accessable recipes that use whole, farm grown ingredients to use when things are in season or when I am looking for something to feature in the farm's newsletter to promote something coming into season. I also have an obsession with cookbooks, so it's easy to find a killer recipe but then forget you ever made it. This way, I can leaf through for ideas and think, wow, that was good, I should make that again!
Tomatoes are the poster child for veggies that aren't anywhere near as good if you buy them out of season in a grocery store. I do try to presereve some of our harvest throughout the growning season for winter eating. With the tomatoes, I dry them in a food dehydrator, but I probably under-utilize them. So a good recipe using sun-dried tomatoes not packed in oil is a great way to brighten up a meal these days, and I just happened to be flipping through my notebook for something else when I came across this gem!
Sun-Dried Tomato Dip
1/2 ounce sun dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
2 tsp each crushed dried basil & minced garlic
8 oz cream cheese, softened
Put tomatoes in a non-reactive saucepan with enough water to cover. Simmer 20 minutes or until rehydrated. Let cool slightly, then puree in a food processor. Combine with cream cheese, basil and garlic.
Simply. Tasty. No added sugar, plus it stars a vegetable. I don't shy away from full-fat dairy, but you could certainly use a low-fat cream cheese or neufchatel if you wanted. I streamlined the process a little by putting my tomatoes in a mortar and pestle and grinding them up a bit, which eliminted using the food processor and cleaning it afterwards! I also just boiled it until