Friday, September 20, 2013

What does fall require?

well, it certainly requires some tomato recipes! Tomatoes, to. mate. o's. We wait for months....we deprive ourselves of supermarket red balls of mushy goo....that ain't no tomato.  Here's a mess o' pics of my tomatoes...... I only planted 2 varieties this year.... weird I know. the Heirloom Russian Krim, and the simple old-fashioned tried and true, Cherry tomato.

Just a sample of the first tomatoes this year.... splitting because we had a big rainstorm as the biggest toms were ripening, so they soaked up a lot of water very quickly. I have in the past, covered the whole tomato patch with a makeshift cover of a wood frame and plastic. This is unslightly but it does work!
I didn't do it this year because I was busy being on vacation and swimming, and generally enjoying summer.... a very short season.

I've been growing heirlooms all my parents were gardeners, and the vets that lived at my dad's hotel also had big gardens. Most often, they were planted with seeds that had been saved from last season! Take that Monsanto!
If you can do nothing else.....I implore you to never ever buy a Monsanto seed. Here's a list of companies that are independent and believe food is too precious to make it a corporate property.  Garden of Eatin' blog is a wonderful and detailed resource for quality seeds.

I have bought a lot of heirloom seeds in the 80s and on, from these companies... Totally Tomato, Tomato Growers Supply, Seymour’s Selected Seeds, R.H. Shumway, Park Seed, Territorial Seed, Shepherd's Seeds, and lots of seeds from European companies.
My mom used Burpee seeds a lot. So, I'm naturally drawn to them, and they are very sentimental.

One of my favorite cookbooks is The World In Your Kitchen, by Troth Wells, pub. 1993. It's all vegetarian.  It's a delightful book with lots of pics of people from all over the world cooking the food they and their families and tribes have eaten for centuries.
That is kickin' it Old School! If you want good food, go back to basics and learn what the classics are....then venture out to Thomas al.

from the Middle East, stuffed tomatoes, Mahasha. this is really great because you probably have all the ingredients right in your cupboards.

Cut your 4 big tomatoes in half and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Turn on the oven to 325 degrees. Heat up oil in a frying pan and add 2 tbs of cilantro or coriander leaves, and crisp them. Add 1 tsp. of curry powder, 1/2 - 1 tsp of chili powder, 2 tsps of cumin seeds, 1 tsp of mustard seeds, 1 clove of crushed garlic to the cilantro and cook for 2 minutes, then remove from the heat, and add salt.
Add 1/2 pound of mashed potatoes, or the same amount cooked bulghur, 1/3 cup of peas, to the reserved tomato pulp.
Stir it together, and fill the tomato halves and place in an ovenproof dish. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes.

A simple relish from Africa.  A peanut and tomato relish.  We substitute walnuts, or cashews for the peanuts, because we are allergic! Again, simple ingredients you have on hand.

a favorite picture from the book......look at those tomatoes!!

and........when you just wanna eat some of those many many many green tomatoes....
I took this picture and the rising steam fogged my camera lens!

You can just slice and fry in oil, or coat them with flour..... and there are a lot of variations.... do a search on TEH InterWebs!