Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer Foods: Sun Tea and Bruschetta

I'm not sure how I discovered sun tea.  It happened just a few days ago but even still I can't remember.  I do know that it's very complicated and time consuming to make.  Ha.  

1. Pour water in a glass beverage dispenser. (Can you believe someone donated this gorgeous glass beauty to Goodwill?? I snagged it for $4.99! My favorite thrift find so far this summer.) It even has an old fashioned metal twist spigot.
2. Dump in 6-10 tea bags of your favorite flavors per gallon of water.  Estimate the water, please don't measure.  It's a part of summer to guesstimate your recipes. For this batch I used 3 Constant Comment tea bags, 3 green tea berry, and 2 unknown bags from my mom's stash.  
3. Let it sit in direct sunlight for the afternoon.  At least 3 hours, the longer the better I think.  Mine sat for about 6.
4. Thinly slice 3-4 lemons and drop 'em on in.  

Best served in mason jars with a little sugar.  I didn't add sugar to the whole pot on this one because my sweet mama is diabetic and I love her.


My mom brought me a bushel of homegrown tomatoes recently.  Seriously, I filled a serving bowl to overflowing with the gems.  What better way to use a bunch of maters than brushetta?  Easy and delicious.

Pour ~ 1/4 cup olive oil in a bowl.  I know you know how to pour olive oil, I'm just a Pioneer Woman wannabe with my action food shots. 

Chop up a bunch of fresh herbs.  Use dried ONLY when you must.  There really is no comparison to fresh and dried.  I used to scoff at those people who insisted I use fresh herbs in recipes- they are expensive at the grocery store!  So I planted a few in my garden this year and they've been by far the most used crop! Using dried herbs in bruschetta is like saying- if you don't have fresh, throw in a few chopped sardines instead. It's a completely different flavor, almost another ingredient altogether.  

Top left: dried oregano TR: fresh rosemary BL: fresh thyme  BR: fresh basil  
I'm abbreviating because I just heard Wyatt wake up!

Chop and add to oil while you dice tomatoes.  Let's it stew and create a kind of herb infused olive oil. 

See.  Overflowing.

Side note:  Take a look at these. The mater on the left is store bought.  Nice but a little pale and super symmetrical.  The right is homegrown.  See how the homegrown is a much richer, darker red?  HUGE taste difference.  I used to scoff at this, too.  Until I actually tried a homegrown tomato.

Dice 6-8 tomatoes and toss with herbs and olive oil.  Add 3-7 cloves of minced garlic depending on your garlic addiction and mix that in, too.

Let this sit in the refrigerator for an afternoon- at least a couple of hours.  Again, the longer the better.  I like using leftovers days afterward on pizzas, sandwiches, etc. 

I don't have any more pics because Rob came home and we had too much fun celebrating his birthday and Father's day with my parents to stop and take pics of food!  

But all you do to serve is :
Slice up a skinny baugette into ~1/2 inch pieces, 
Toast those pieces in a 300 degree oven for 10 minutes, 
Slather each slice with melted butter and 
Scoop a little topping on each slice. 

Done and yum!

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