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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The First Garden Tomatoes

You've Come a Long Way Baby!
It wasn't too long ago that I told you I was waiting anxiously for the tomatoes to get ripe. Well, it is that time and I'm loving it. I think there's something about seeing those red jewels glistening through the bright green foliage that just makes my heart race. And my feet race too--right in through the garden gate to get to pickin'.
The cherry tomatoes are ripening sporadically, but they never make it to the house. The heirloom tomatoes, however, are savored. I served the first ones thickly sliced with a drizzle of healthy olive oil, fresh Hawaiian sea salt, and cracked black pepper. The Weight Watchers oil requirement is always difficult for me to remember, but I guess as long as there are ripe tomatoes in the garden, I won't have a problem.
One of my favorite things to do with tomatoes, is to make Farmgirl's Summer in a Bowl. This is from her In My Kitchen Garden Blog. I've been a huge fan and blog follower for years now. She gives a great glimpse of country bliss. I've reprinted her recipe here. I loosely follow it, depending on what I have, just as I'm sure she does!
Farmgirl's Basis Of Summer In A Bowl
Note: Any ingredient aside from the tomatoes can be omitted.
Vine-Ripened Tomatoes
Onions or Scallions
Fresh basil
Fresh oregano
Olive Oil
Fresh Garlic or Good Garlic Powder
Salt & Pepper to taste
My instructions: Chop and combine herbs and vegetables and let stand as long as you can stand it! I do not enjoy refrigerated tomatoes, they get too mushy, so I only make what we can eat. I've added any number of other fresh, chopped veggies. Peppers and pea pods are especially good. Fresh broccoli or cauliflower, thinly sliced carrots are also delicious. It's almost like a summer soup. Delicious!
I love it straight from the mixing bowl, served as a topping for tacos or burritos, as a salad side, or alone on freshly made pita bread (or freshly defrosted, made a couple of weeks ago pita bread!). If you haven't made pita bread before, Farmgirl has a great recipe with great pictures. It's so easy and so good, you must try it! I always make at least a double batch and freeze the extras.

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