Sunday, September 19, 2010

Relishing the small pleasures

Things have been a little difficult at home lately and at times I've been feeling full of despair. So the little pleasures have been very important to me. That little bit of happiness I can get from creating something, especially if it's homely, can be enough to get me through the day and let me know that life can be good and beautiful. Making tomato relish is for me one of those small pleasures.

First you need 1 1/2 kilos of juicy red tomatoes, the more ripe, the better.

You'll need one old, stained recipe book that used to belong to your mother.....

some empty jam jars.....

and some of this.

Cut a little cross in the top of each tomato and cover them with boiling water for a few minutes. This makes them easy to peel and this is where the ripeness helps. The skin peels off easier, the more ripe they are.

Chop up the tomatoes and two large onions and put them in a large saucepan.

Cover with brown vinegar and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 mins.

Add a heaped tablespoon each of dry mustard and curry powder, 1 teaspoon of salt and two cups of sugar.

Simmer for another 20 minutes.

Thicken with 1/2 cup cornflour which has been blended with 2 cups white vinegar.
Pour into jars which have been cleaned and heated in the oven on low heat.

Arrange in a row and admire your handy work.

Tasty with burgers and sandwiches or with oven baked potato wedges for an after-school snack.

Or do as Rosie does and just dip your finger in and enjoy the flavoursome tanginess.

What are your small pleasures?


  1. Oh one of my small pleasures are reading inspiring blog posts.... (thank u Esther :)))) and a bigger pleasure is also to actually follow thru and make something I read about and think "that looks so good I want to try make it"... So now your tomato relish is bookmarked and is added to my list of "things to make" that will def provide a smile and some satisfaction with myself....xoxo

  2. Ooh, that sounds delicious.My tomatoes are just starting to ripen. Hopefully they'll all ripen before the weather turns. I'd love to make your relish but may end up having to make green tomato chutney instead. I love your pantry.I had one in a previous house and I loved it. My Grandma had a very big pantry and I used to love going in there and looking at everything.

  3. Esther, One of my small pleasures is creating in the kitchen. Recipes like this are wonderful and the ability to create something like this is very satisfying.
    Reading about others doing the same thing is another small pleasure.
    Looking for the beauty in the details is comforting.

  4. Sorry to hear things are hectic, glad you can escape and make these beautiful relishes. Take care.


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Get to know me

  • I love the smell of cinnamon and vanilla.
  • My favourite flowers are daisies.
  • My favourite trees are pine trees.
  • I always like to have the bickie jar full and a cake on the cake stand. I know...not that healthy, but so good to look at.
  • Autumn is my favourite month, although I do wish we had more of a change of colours up here in Queensland.
  • I love Anne of Green Gables and Laura Ingalls Wilder. They started my love affair with "old-fashioned" stuff.
  • I'm a boots and jeans kind of girl, but also love vintage skirts and dresses.
  • I like sewing and am in love with quilts at the moment.
  • I love reading. (I have a weakness for archeological thrillers and historical romances, but not Mills and Boon-type ones.)
  • I love old houses with character. No new estate houses for me. (Sorry Rosie.)
  • I love vintage/cottage/farmhouse decorating and pretty pinks and blues, with a splash of red for colour.
  • Polka dots can make me sigh with delight.
  • I have 4 chooks. They are MY pets. Another tick on my dream-come-true chart.
  • I don't eat dessert much any more. I'm not dieting, I just don't want it. (Does that mean I'm growing up if I say no to an icecream cone?)
  • I'll still always say yes to chocolate though!
  • I like to sit on the front stairs in the sun, to drink my morning cup of tea, while I contemplate what to do in the garden.
  • I've got the gardening bug again recently. It comes and goes with the weather. I'm envisioning cottage flowers in pink, blue and white to go with my green picket fence.