My tomato bowl runneth over

My bounty

I have four tomato plants in my backyard.  I used to plant six but that just caused grief.  They got big, they intertwined, they bent over in despair.  I was too overwhelmed to help them.  Those tomato “cages” are not easy to put around a 4 foot plant with a tomatoes growing on it.  (I suppose putting it on when it was a small seedling would be easier).

I always plant cherry tomatoes and this year I had two of the small round yellow tomato plants (upper left), one of the small green kind (upper right) and one of the lumpy yellow ones (bottom).

I wish with all my heart I remembered the names of the tomatoes–especially the lumpy yellow one as it they are so sweet I can barely stop eating them, even half-ripe.  I knew the names when I bought them and did not write them done.  “I will remember these names,” I thought, which is about the same as waking up in the middle of the night and thinking, “I will remember this dream”.

Four plants has provided a good crop for us.  We’ve been enjoying tomato salads all August and now with the branches full of ever ripening bounty I have been making tomato sauce.

not pretty but pretty darn yummy*

So here’s what I do when I get a bowl full (about 4-5 cups?).  I get out a large pan, sauté a finely chopped onion in olive oil and mash in some fresh garlic once the onion has softened.  Then I pour in the tomatoes and let simmer them until they pop, soften and release all their juicy insides.  I continue simmering  until the sauce thickens a bit and just season with a bit of sea salt.  THAT IS IT.

I always buy good pasta for these late summer meals and in this case I topped with whole milk ricotta which cut the acidity of the sauce and makes it even better.

I realized fast that I am much too lazy to blanche and peel cherry tomatoes but it actually doesn’t matter.  The sauce still tastes amazing.  It is such a perfect example of using simple, good ingredients.  And some mysteriously fertile soil at the side of our garage.  Our Macedonian neighbors are so jealous.

Tomatoes = Sauce

I am cooking up another batch today.  And thinking of my friend who started out the gardening season with a ridiculous amount of seedlings–300?  He’ll be laughing if it’s a long winter (but stressed right now as he spends the wee hours bidding on stockpots through ebay ).   And I think he’s much more likely than I to not make sauce with tomato skins in it.  Life it tougher for the perfectionists.  But if you’re really fussed you can strain the sauce through a colander which will catch most of the skin I suppose. Or just don’t eat at my house.

*that is my son’s hand ( in the photo)  stealing my food.  We had a talk, don’t worry.

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9 Comments

Filed under All Recipes, Ruminations on the Edible

9 responses to “My tomato bowl runneth over

  1. Lisa

    I’ll take some of that sauce. Yum!

  2. Looks lovely. Something I made the other day didn’t look that good, was a little bland, but it tastes fantastic.

  3. looks aren’t everything!

  4. Alison

    Exactly! Who can remember the names of plants. We bought a few, like Sue, and even with tabs that show initials of the name, we still cannot remember them now. One is oblong with orange and red stripes, and makes a great sauce.

    My mom recommended to me that if I had too many to process, just wipe them off and put them in one layer in a freezer Ziploc bag, making a stack of bags for the freezer. Pull out as many as you wish, thaw in a bowl and the skins just pull off (if you want). It works, and helps when you run out of time.

    • Oh! That is such a great tip on the tomatoes. And the skins pull off you say? I will try that. I think I have one more batch on the plants.
      Could your striped oblong tomatoes be Roman Football tomatoes? Maybe also known as Roman striped….

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