Homegrown tomatoes by the Fourth of July.
We do it every year here in northern New Jersey, but this year we
just squeaked past the finish line in the nick of time, with a small, ripe
plum tomato plucked from the vine yesterday, on the Fourth. Whew!
Ain't she a beaut?
When I watered the borders today, where our tomato plants cozy up
cheek-by-jowl with our perennials and a few scraggly annuals,
with a healthy serving of weeds to keep them in fighting trim . . .
another plum tomato just fell right off its perch, into the wet dirt.
I rinsed it off, and I et it. It was delish. Warm and spicy.
Our secret to getting homegrown tomatoes by the 4th of July?
We totally cheat.
We buy BIG thick-stemmed tomato plants in big pots, already
blooming, dig them into our dirt and pass them off as our own.
Often they have baby tomatoes already growing.
They take off like gangbusters.
I'd tell you where we get these amazingly big and healthy tomato
plants, for just a couple of bucks apiece, but then I'd have to kill you.
Hey, it's New Jersey. We got rules.
Now if we can keep the chipmunks, groundhogs, and deer away from
our tomatoes, we might actually get a chance to eat more than one or two.
'Cause this is all we usually get off the vines:
I don't know about you, but I prefer
my tomatoes not be pre-chewed.
I prefer them fresh, in sandwiches,
or in something tossed-together, like this:
Just cheese, fresh tomatoes, bacon and a bit of basil
in a pre-baked pie crust. Into the oven - instant lunch.
Or this - a spicy cold tomato soup, topped with a plop of goat cheese.
This is why we try and grow enough tomatoes for us, and the
foraging beasts. The beasts always get more,
but we make do with their leftovers.
Summertime at That Old House.
Stop by, why don't you? We could use the help weeding . . . .
And our Dion could use the company.
Have a lovely July 5th! -- Cass